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Ask A Geek: Help me move my workouts indoors SAFELY!

Dear BreathingGeek,

Pollen season is making me M-I-S-E-R-A-B-L-E, so I’ve moved my workouts indoors. I’m thinking of making a home gym in my basement, anything I should keep in mind to make sure my asthma doesn’t flare up again?

Flexing in Fort Frances

Dear FiFF, Seasonal allergies are a drag, eh? You’re not alone – our Lung Health Line has gotten a TON of calls about pollen this year.

his, but less whimsy and more wheeze

You’ve already taken a positive step by recognizing your asthma triggers. Now let’s make sure you don’t inadvertently expose yourself to more of them when your workouts go underground.

  1. Get low (low-VOC, that is)
  2. If you’re planning on doing any painting or refinishing of fixtures, you’ll want to reach for products that are low in Volatile Organic Compounds, and keep the work area well ventilated during renovations.
  3. Run (a lifesaving test)
    Radon is a naturally occurring gas that happens to be the second leading cause of lung cancer – and running a test to check exposure levels in your home is easy. You can purchase a test kit from the Lung Health Foundation or your local hardware store. Set it and forget it – most tests collect their data for around three months.
  4. Cut (the clutter)
    Is your basement overflowing with stuff, stuff, stuff? Reducing the excess clutter makes for better airflow, and it will be easier to keep the space clean and clear of dust.
  5. Cool down (to prevent mould)
    Consider running an air conditioner to filter out mould spores and to reduce dampness indoors during warmer months. Replace the filter regularly. A dehumidifier is a good year-round solution, too! Aim for humidity levels around 30-50%.
  6. Clear the air
    Consider purchasing an air purifier to further boost the air quality in your basement workout headquarters. You can view our Air Purifier Buying Guide here.

On the bright side, FiFF, by moving your workouts to an asthma-safe indoor environment, you’ll also be protecting your lungs from air pollution on days when the AQHI (Air Quality Health Index) number for your region is high.  Nice.  

Say – when you’re done setting up your sweet workout oasis, wanna come set one up for your friendly neighbourhood breathing know-it-all?

 Live long and prosper,


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