Zika Virus: Is it Safe to Run?

Zika cases in Singapore have recently topped 200 cases, according to local authorities. The burning question on our minds at the moment should be “Is it safe for runners to run?

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The Zika epidemic first broke out in South America and even though Singapore is half a world away, it eventually reached our shores. The most recent #plottwist? Some cases of the virus in Singapore was found to be a different strain as the one from Brazil.

What is Zika?

Zika is a virus similar to dengue and yellow fever. As such, it is spread by the same Aedes mosquito that transmits the dengue virus. Zika symptoms can include fever, red eyes, joint pain, headaches and a rash – all of which can also be seen in dengue fever cases. Zika can be regarded to be a mild form of dengue. In fact, the majority of people infected with zika will not know or feel anything.

Should I Be Running?

To be perfectly honest, why not? The way we see it, zika is certainly less deadly than dengue fever, and if runners have been running through years of dengue outbreaks, we see no reason why zika should stop you from running. In fact, since both zika and dengue are transmitted by the same species, worrying about mosquito breeding should be on the top of our minds instead.

How Can I Prevent Myself from Being Bitten?

If you haven’t already noticed, the Aedes mosquito tends to be pretty active at dusk and dawn. They tend to be out for blood (pun intended) when it’s shady, cloudy, or just after a rain.

Hence, morning and evening runners might want to avoid running at those times. Given our searing weather conditions, it’s understandable that these are the most popular times for a run, and we don’t blame you.

If you must run like your life depended on it, it is recommended that you wear long-sleeves and long running pants. Apply mosquito repellent just to be safe! If you’re looking for an all-natural mosquito repellent, Theo10 uses only essential oils and protections lasts up to 4 hours. All LIV3LY members enjoy a 10% discount on Theo10 Repel.

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Staying away from potential breeding spots will help you avoid getting bitten as well. Instead of going to running trails at MacRitchie or Bukit Timah, where the dense foliage are hot breeding spots, try the treadmill at the gym or any one of the stadiums across the island.

Lastly, knowing where the outbreaks are means you can plan your running route better. After all, who wants to cross paths with a hungry mozzie? You should always read the latest news for the most updated information on local clusters.

“In fact, majority of people infected with zika will not know or feel anything.”


Just like dengue, life goes on for everyone, including runners! Exercising caution and common sense when you go running during this epidemic period will certainly help you avoid getting infected with either zika or dengue. Stay safe!


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LIV3LY Editor
LIV3LY Editor

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