Q: Before parenthood, I rarely got sick. But now I pick up every little bug that my 18-month-old daughter gets. Is this normal for a new parent? This cycle is wreaking havoc on my training and racing schedule. — Dan R.
COACH FRED: If you think having a child exposes you to germs, you don’t want to be a teacher! When I started my career, I was sick a lot. Kids wrote papers, sneezed on them and handed them to me. But eventually I developed immunity to most high-school germs.
I think the same thing happens with parenthood. You’ll soon become resistant to the germs that attack children and won’t have as many illnesses — at least until your daughter starts pre-school and gets exposed to a whole new Petri dish of evil bugs.
Also, examine your training load. The stress of being a dad, along with keeping up your normal schedule on the bike, might be compromising your immune system and making you more susceptible to infection.