I am SO excited for the start of the Winter Olympics tomorrow night! I LOVE watching the opening ceremonies. No matter what country you live in, it's fun to watch your country walk in under your flag. I also like to see the different uniforms! (Although I do think Ralph Lauren designed some really crazy uniforms for the U.S. athletes this year. Let's put it this way-we'll be able to spot our athletes in a crowd!!)
I was looking at the schedule of events for all of the winter sports, and it made me wonder-how do the Olympic compete in winter??!! They're not just exercising in cold weather-they are competing at an intense level with other athletes from around the world. And everyone wants that Gold medal!
I don't do well out in the cold because cold temperatures are one of my asthma triggers. I wondered.... how many of the Olympic athletes have asthma? Medicine.Net has an article called "Asthma Common Among Olympic Athletes." It says that 8% of Olympic athletes have asthma, that's about the same rate as the rest of the population. It says that "asthma is the most common chronic condition among Olympic athletes"
So, if Olympic athletes can compete at a world class level with asthma, we should be able to spend a little time snowboarding, skiing, and snowshoeing in the winter, right??!!
If cold temperatures are one of your triggers, just take a few precautions. Children's Hospital of Wisconsin recommends wearing a scarf over your nose and mouth to warm the air before you breathe it. They also list warning signs of when to get medical help for asthma:
Signs of a severe attack that require emergency care include:
- Wheezing that does not improve after taking the bronchodilator or rescue medication.
- Difficulty talking or playing.
- Breathing that gets faster or harder. Children are having difficulty breathing if they are bending over to breathe, flaring their nostrils or raising their shoulders. If a child's lips or fingernails turn blue, go to an emergency room immediately.
Winter is a beautiful time to be outdoors and enjoy nature. Talk to your doctor about what precautions you may need to take.
And don't forget to warm up with a little hot chocolate when you're done. In fact, there's a little place in Paris called Angelina. Their hot chocolate is to die for! It's like drinking a melted chocolate bar. Yum!!!!! Oh, that I was back in Paris right now!! I'm craving Angelina hot chocolate now!!