COVID Vaccine Shots and Training

So I got COVID vaccine today. I got the Pfizer one which can reportedly make you feel miserable for a day of two- something to keep in mind while training. I’m in 3rd week of modified ssblv where I’m finding 90 minute versions of 60 min work outs and adding a zwift race in for about 450 tss a week. Post shot I did Spencer +3 which is 7x3 min vo2 max intervals - so far so good. Thinking may need to start rest week early depending on how I feel but will see. Will post back with my experience


Getting mine Sunday. Good to know and luckily next week is a recovery week.


Wow you’re in the exact same boat as me. I get mine Sunday and I was wondering if I should move my rest week up early. I figured I’d keep things the same and just play it by ear.

Some of the pulmonologists I work with (I’m an ICU nurse) have said that it is typically the second dose vaccine that can result in the fever and general malaise following the vaccine. I’m 2 days post vaccination and haven’t had any issues yet.


Great thread!!

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Got mine Wednesday and felt completely fine yesterday (Thursday) but didn’t have a workout planned due to work. Hopped on the bike this morning and legs felt like garbage. Body as a whole feels fine, but couldn’t ask much of my legs, ended up doing Z2 instead of the SS90% I had planned. Still unsure if it’s the vaccine or my previous buildup.

I’ve been doing 3 SS90 workouts a week plus an over/under, so I’ve had a good amount of intensity. And I did McAdie Wednesday after getting poked and it went fine. Thinking I just needed another days rest. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow.

(Plus I’ve been pulling 12-hour shifts at work for a week now so that’s probably not helping either.)


You’re going to get into some very confusing, very complex weeds here pretty quick.

To reduce down several med school classes on immunology, which is one of the most complex systems in your body, mRNA vaccines cause an immune response that includes inflammation. The inflammation is appropriate and an integral step in forming the future antibody response. Depending on the person-to-person variation in immune systems, between which the differences can be staggering, you may or may not “feel” the inflammatory response. For some people, it is big and lasts for a couple of days; for others, it is mild or not noticeable at all. This inflammatory response inhibits the adaptations you would be seeking with structured rides. Pure bro science: I bet it is related to intensity given what we know about illness recovery and exercise.

Again, this is a simplification, the scale of which goes beyond our ability to describe here. I don’t know of any well-structured studies on COVID19 vaccinations and athletes. Most reports are anecdotal.

Regardless, it lasts between 36 and 48 hours. Throwing an intense workout in there with an ongoing immune response such as this one seems counter-productive.


Not directed to you specifically, but do most people consider SweetSpot to be an intense workout? I’ve always considered sprint, VO2, over/unders, maybe threshold to be “intensity” workouts. But I don’t know if I ever considered SS to be in there.

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I guess it depends on what @HMG means by “intense” in this context. But yes, sweet spot is generally considered intensity.


I had my first dose 1 week ago. I had a much more painful deltoid for a few days than with the flu vaccination. I felt pretty run down for a couple of days, but absolutely fine now. I’m due second dose on 8th January.

There won’t be any studies on COVID vaccine on athletes. I can’t see it as any priority in the pandemic, and given the vaccine has only been available for less than 2 weeks, there won’t have been time.


I think this is a pretty simple one. I wouldn’t plan on anything epic/very hard in the few days after, just some easy-moderate rides, and if you do feel crap, skip them and take an extra rest day or 2. A couple of days rest won’t hurt anyone in the grand scheme of things.


An example of good salesmanship :slight_smile:

For my N=1, intensity is anything above IF 0.65 endurance riding. I would definitely consider Sweet Spot “intensity”



Here in the UK the distribution is “eldest down” so currently it’s basically 80+ year olds getting it.

Assuming you get reasonable warning that you are going to get one of the vaccines I’d just put in a recovery week for that time frame. It’s not going to adversely affect your overall training and better that than possibly causing some complications potentially reducing the effectiveness of the vaccine and needing it again. I doubt the latter would happen but you never know.

The only jab I’ve had any sort of reaction from was the combined Cholera-Typhoid prior to heading to Pakistan. I woke up in the middle of that night sweating buckets, no fever or anything else. The following night I was fine.

Pettit is your friend :joy:


Day 1- arm hurts had some chills overnight fine today. Rest day today then 4x10 at threshold tomorrow. Think I’ll be fine

Point of my post was to make others aware you may not train normally around this vaccine more so than other vaccines. Exercise won’t reduce vaccine effectiveness.


The way things are going I’ll probably get it the day before my only ‘A’ race in July :neutral_face:

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Not strictly true.

Well, no. But for the general population it is. Health workers and other critical staff will be getting the vaccine ahead of their age group.

My fiancee is a paramedic, and there are ‘no immediate plans’ for her to be vaccinated :man_shrugging:

They are prioritising key areas of high risk - vaccinators were first, then care home type settings (residents and staff), COVID red pathway staff, staff subject to weekly asymptomatic testing. I fell into the latter category.