At lunch yesterday, one of my swimmer colleagues was describing his workouts that take place in an outdoor pool come rain, hail, or 20 MPH winds. Another coworker asked him if he frequently gets sick from being in the cold like that, and his answer was of course not. It reminded me of how my swim coaches in Peru believed that being cold for mere minutes would make you extremely ill. My Peruvian coaches and teammates had many unique viewpoints of health around the pool, and here are just a few:
- If you get out of the pool and don’t immediately bundle up in several towels, you will get a get sick and probably die. Even in the summer.
- That said, jumping from hot water to cold water, then back to hot water is very healthy for you. But jumping from that hot water to cool air will kill you.
- When you do get the seasonal cold or flu, do not eat or drink ANYTHING that isn’t hot. This is why Gatorade is served warm to hot at swim meets in the winter.
- If you eat ice cream in the winter, you will get sick and die.
- If you are cold, eat a candy bar. Chocolate is the best way to warm up.
- Never, ever eat a banana and then drink cool water. This will give you a migraine and stomach ache. (But sharing a water bottle with the teammate who’s recovering from cholera is no big deal – you’ll be fine!)