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These Crowded (and Polluted) Streets

Does your morning jog take you straight through Times Square, down the Pacific Coast Highway, on the Miracle Mile or along A1A (beach front avenue)?


For those of us who choose to exercise outdoors in major cities, you should know that air pollution can irritate your lungs, making it harder to breathe while working out outside.

The three main components of air pollution are fine particulate matter, ozone and carbon monoxide. For those of us exercising, the overexposure to carbon monoxide can lead to symptoms such as dizziness, confusion, headaches and dangerously high body temperatures. Ozone, which is the main reason we have smog in cities, adversely affects breathing patterns and decreases the size of airways, making the lungs more resistant to oxygen.

What's more? Turns out that living on a major street is pretty bad for your lungs too. Great.

Fit's Tip: Work out in the early morning or later in the evening, when the traffic is not as congested. If you experience difficulty breathing while exercising, you should see a doctor.

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