Sunday, March 16, 2008

Kill A Cold

I just got back from a 12 day BeachBody mega-trip. A few days in Anaheim California at the big money give-away, then off to Maui at the first ever coaches event and finishing up in Philadelphia at QVC. Planes, trains, automobiles 
and plenty of contact with people, places and things during and between events. The miricle is that I arrived back home in LA, sleep deprived across 6 times zones without a cold or flu. Did I get lucky, or was it something I did, or better yet, didn't do? Back in the day, I'd walk to my mailbox and catch a cold. For a fit guy my immune system was weak as a kitten. I think the reason was was STRESS! Turns out fretting makes you sick even if you're eating well and exercising. At the ripe age of 49+ I'm finally learning to let go of the "catastrophizing." East coast Italian people like to worry. Ask my man Nick. I'm not Gandhi yet but I'm a hell of a lot better than I used to be. Travel always made me nervous, so constipation and a head cold were commonplace whenever I left my zip code for more than 24 hours. I honestly believe that I've survived this cold season (so far) because I'm rolling with the bunches more and letting go of the outcome on things.    

This doesn't mean I'll never get a cold again, so I'm prepared to nip the next one in the bud. You know how it happens. All of a sudden you feel that scratch in your throat and your energy starts to go south. It's coming!  You're in the early stages of a damn cold. Here's the crazy thing... catching a cold or flu once in a while can actually help you stay healthy over the long run, by ridding your body of its weakest cells. But maybe you’ve got other plans for the next few days.  If you catch it in the beginning, here is how you can beat that cold before it wreaks havoc on your body, your mood, and your productivity:
As soon as you notice that sore, tickly feeling in your throat, break out the warm salt water and gargle deep.  REALLY, just like mom said.  Tilt your head back and gargle aggressively. You may even want to tap your throat with your fingers (in the “Adams apple” region) to encourage the warm salt water to trickle deeply into your throat.  Do this several times in one sitting and repeat it as often as you can throughout the day. Yep.  That’s all you have to do – if you catch it early enough, this simple technique can kill that cold. Viruses that cause colds and flus typically get caught in your tonsils and adenoids before they spread through the body.  Warm salt water can actually remove viruses from the tonsils and adenoids that line the back of your throat.  If you can knock them out before they get past your body’s first line of defense, the cold doesn’t get a chance to develop.
If you gargle your brains out and still end up developing a full-blown cold, take comfort in knowing that the virus and immune system are fast at work destroying your weakest cells.  Rest, drink plenty of fluids, and blow your nose as often as it runs to help your body purge what it’s trying to get rid of. Take good care of your health and immune system by consistently making healthy diet and lifestyle choices, getting plenty of rest and dealing with stress. If you do, you can keep your cells strong enough to avoid getting infected by viruses in the first place.



Christopher said...

Hey Tony,

Good advice, I've also found that doing mild exercise helps in building your body backup. I'm sure everyone has their own remedies for fighting or avoiding a cold. I think a light round of yoga or tai chi (which I advocated in earlier posts) helps to move the chi through the body which is what illness is, a blockage or disruption of the chi. To move the chi with jing, chi kung exercises are helpful. Lots of rest and fluids clearly help as well.

I will say this though, I've been doing tai chi for many years and it has been years since I have caught even a cold. I also used to get pretty good migraines but have not had them in years as well. I keep pushing tai chi but it's been amazing in my life as far as building the internal systems and immune system. I actually dated a girl who told me her grandfather did tai chi for many, many years and when he decided he wanted to die, he stopped doing tai chi and three years later he died. Powerful stuff.

On another note, I did watch you on QVC and I was commenting on how somewhat lethargic you seemed. I thought maybe it was the QVC host flapping his jaws and you couldn't get a word in edge wise but you did seem fairly low key. Not the goofy Tony from Power 90 or the fun but serious Tony from P90X. So I concluded at the end there must have been something up. I did try to call into the testimonial line to sing the praises of P90X but there were too many people trying to do the same so, oh well, maybe next time.

I actually wanted to comment how P90X was also a mental discipline and mind enhancer along with access to these blogs and other helpful tools from the website. I don't remember that being mentioned but thought it was just as important. The mind needs exercise and these blogs with your thoughts are great for doing that.

Okay, I'm all done with the "Tony is Great" stuff, hope you feel better, get back to being you and I'll be in the chat room tonight.

Christopher Ortega

Krista said...

Hey Tony, I started P90 a month ago and I like it a lot. I can't wait for P90X...but I will because my body is NOT ready for that butt kicking!

Another thing that helps is when you travel, make sure to take lots of vitamin B and keep hydrated. Flying actually dehdrates you and you might find, like I do, that you don't drink as much water when you are away from your usual routine. Also, I don't know if it has been proven, but if you take zinc, it will cut your down time to about half. My dad knows a guy who has had zinc poisoning. He was horribly sick for like 3 days, and after that he never got another cold.

And one more thing (this is me venting) if you are sick, STAY HOME! I'm tired of people at work coming in and spreading their viruses like it's some sort of fabulous Christmas present. The gift that keeps on giving! No thank you!

See you tomorrow for Sculpt! (kind of) :) Sculpt is my favorite! I can actually do push-ups now!


Tara said...

Tony--Thanks for the hint on the warm saltwater gargle. I'd always heard about doing it for a sore throat, but never at that very first warning "tickle." I get colds pretty often (am trying to control my mild allergies better, as that appears to be how they start), so we'll see how this goes.

Really enjoyed my P90 Sculpt 3-4 with you this AM. :) Am scheduled to begin the X in mid-April, and I'm scared, but looking forward to it. ALSO, I should tell you that YOUR workout got my husband exercising again for the first time in (cough) many years! He LOVES your workouts! So thank you very much--you're a hero in my house. :D

niko63 said...


From one Italian East Coast worry wart to another, what's the big deal, right?!?:)) When we worry excessively and start to obsess about things that don't mean a heap of beans in the long run, we actually make ourselves sick without knowing it. Case in point, last night at 2 o'clock in the morning I woke up suddenly and started to run through a course of relatively normal events in my mind that happened 20 years ago. If I knew then what I know now, blah, blah, know how it goes. I wasted precious minutes of healing sleep time for absolutely no reason. Water under the bridge. Get over it, life happens.

Onto something completely different, your appearance on QVC was stellar. You were definitely on your game, and man, can you sell, dude! As I listened, I could tell you really believed in what you were doing and expressed it magnificently. Also, my parents live about an hour north of QVC headquarters in Reading, Pa. Some of my mom's good down home Italian cooking would cure any travel sickness. We would have loved to have you all over. Well, maybe next time:)).

Just like Christopher said, light exercise, yoga and walking certainly help boost the immune system. Deep breathing also can help. I like your "old world" salt gargle remedy, used it for years. In addition, another way to kill the bothersome throat tickle, is to chew on a clove or two of fresh garlic. Let it go down slowly, so the antibacterial and antiviral effects of the garlic can work. Might also kill your social life, but I've found it to be a quick fix.:)

Vaya con Dios, mi amigo!


Amit said...


Hope you feeling better. Maybe the sudden temperature shifts of the Utah ski slopes and Maui got the cold going... I am pretty sure the salt water gargle helps but my favorite remedy for early cold symptoms is popping a vitamin C pill or eating an orange. Believe me it helps!!! Also blowing your nose frequently is not really a good idea because then that could lead to a bad sinus congestion or even infection. And now heres the mother of cold cures out there. This what my grandma used to tell me back in India. When you have a sore throat take a glass of warm milk, add a teaspoon of ginger powder (you get ginger powder in the "spice" section of any grocery store), and a thin slice of butter (size of a nickel) and bottoms up!! ! This works for real.
Well, i gotta go bring it for my plyoX so u keep it real my friend and take it easy...


Anonymous said...

I have been telling my son the sam ething for years "gargle with salt water" maybe he will believe it now that "your" mother said it! lol

Loved seeing you and the gang on QVC -I found myself saying hey I gotta get that "oh wait" already have it -great job

Rachel said...

You know, funny enough, the gargling salt water thing never did anything for me, but I discovered my own little remedy. I used to take cold pills, but then they'd knock me out for several weeks (you don't want to see what one "non-drowzy" [ha!] Benadryl will do...I'm out of commission for at least a week). Now I start taking a couple aspirin if I start to feel like I'm getting sick, and for whatever reason, it knocks it out within a couple days.

Luckily, I've managed to dodge the cold and flu bug this season, which is rare for me--especially considering the length of winter in Erie, Pennsylvania and I'm out walking around in it a little everyday for work.

However, my husband gets sick a lot. Of course, he's constantly at the gym working out, but I used to do that with him and then started P90X, but I still haven't gotten sick (*fingers crossed*)...

xeno_girl said...

Hope you had fun in Cali and Maui! I tell ya, watching the BNN videos of all you guys in the bright sunshine, surrounded by palm trees... got me a little jealous!

maraki71 said...

Not sure if this is the right place for this, but here go's...

I LOVE P90X!!! It's awesome, fun, doesn't bore me, it may kill me, but boy oh boy is it fun. I am a Black Belt in Kempo Karate, so it takes alot for me not to get bored with a routine because at Karate classes we do something different in every class, oh and we get to beat the poop outta eachother so that is fun as well.

I am on my first week, can't what to see the changes happen. My biggest issues.. large thighs/calves they are genetic, hopefully all of this will slim them down especially the calves.

Thanks Tony!!!

Anonymous said...

Hmm. I just read this EXACT thing about the salt water from a doctor's site.