Long Covid in Athletes

Long Covid in Athletes March 16, 2023

Way back in the fall of 2020, what caught my eye in reports of “long covid” were accounts from physicians and nurses who previously had been physically active and professionally ambitious, but now no amount of determination and perseverance could shake off their persistent, debilitating fatigue.

Recently I was surprised, therefore, when someone I usually look to for level-headed, logical, data-supported analyses was convinced that “long covid” was purely an anxiety-related disorder.

Since I follow several (real, credentialed, not-quacky, not grifters) physical therapists and neurologists on Twitter, for Long Covid Awareness Day I was treated to a festival of retweets from real patients who fit that same profile of such a stark before and after. I’d like to share a few of those, so you can see how I came to believe this is a real physical illness, even though my own experience with covid was unremarkable.

This is not about policy positions. We can acknowledge a disease exists and still disagree on the best public health initiatives for dealing with it.

As you’ll see, the group below consist of both high-performance athletes and ordinary people who lived physically active, socially-engaged, satisfying lives prior to getting sick. Some were high-achieving professionals, some were more happy-go-lucky. Not all of these are verifiable, but I think there are enough leads to get you started if you’d like to research the topic.

For the moment this is going to be mostly just a link list, because I’m getting glitches if I embed all the tweets. But here are three that caught my eye to get you started, and then you can click on more if you’re curious.

UPDATE 3/17/23: I compiled a thread on Twitter that matches the list below, and also corrected the one accidental duplicate that I found. Go here to scroll everyone in a single pass: https://twitter.com/JenFitz_Reads/status/1636624699743412227. One of the accounts looks like it went private, but I left it in the list as that may be a temporary change.

“Before catching Covid in late October 2020, I could walk on my hands for over 20 seconds. Now, I have to limit how much I walk on my feet. Let’s dismantle the myth that healthy people can’t become chronically ill with Long Covid. I’m among many who have.”


“Me in my element! I miss doing a lot things prior to #LongCovid but nothing compares to the joy of competing and teaching the game that allowed me to travel the world, get an education and develop lifelong relationships.”


“#LongCovid has affected nearly every organ system in my body since 2020. Once someone who saved lives daily as a cardiologist, I’ve found myself in a years long fight for my own.

I’ve been in the company of millions worldwide.

I see all of you. ”


  1. https://twitter.com/DawnMcArthur2/status/1635990809899048960
  2. https://twitter.com/NoHealthNoFun/status/1635958006855917571
  3. https://twitter.com/Nc_Rog/status/1635886473508691968
  4. https://twitter.com/thepollenberry/status/1635972756423491586
  5. https://twitter.com/DrJoGreer/status/1635918890126409729
  6. https://twitter.com/lapis_lazuli11/status/1636045984386916353
  7. https://twitter.com/slpglondon/status/1636027067803262976
  8. https://twitter.com/DrGrounds/status/1635941331729108994
  9. https://twitter.com/jomaybin/status/1635924092799836161
  10. https://twitter.com/TaitaiClaire/status/1635925074829008897
  11. https://twitter.com/AlyssaaErinn/status/1636034731396726784
  12. https://twitter.com/SawyerBlatz/status/1636030017946923010
  13. https://twitter.com/Jane_Ryan_/status/1635913985458405376
  14. https://twitter.com/DYork1979/status/1635994096811790337
  15. https://twitter.com/Mormolykeia/status/1636065408351346690
  16. https://twitter.com/coco_chatel/status/1635922818763313153
  17. https://twitter.com/MichaelCWilder/status/1636052651145302016
  18. https://twitter.com/nolimitjuni0r/status/1636039106277912576
  19. https://twitter.com/AcrossTheMersey/status/1636019850618208260
  20. https://twitter.com/GeoEduOne/status/1635999042990661633
  21. https://twitter.com/annitht/status/1635969461176922115
  22. https://twitter.com/rebslogan/status/1636009304640696323
  23. https://twitter.com/vee_etc/status/1636001856601088001
  24. https://twitter.com/nolimitjuni0r/status/1636039111818596352
  25. https://twitter.com/brandybulock1/status/1635985257538150400
  26. https://twitter.com/PikeWielder/status/1635885002197192705
  27. https://twitter.com/HollyHK_UTA/status/1636014724600004608
  28. https://twitter.com/largar5/status/1636092814324023296
  29. https://twitter.com/MindOverColor/status/1636193910258286593
  30. https://twitter.com/theedifyingword/status/1631865538669608965
  31. https://twitter.com/AnitaSusmok1/status/1636182731884298243
  32. https://twitter.com/VBoyling/status/1635974130301382656
  33. https://twitter.com/PhillyPhile215/status/1636034107271413760
  34. https://twitter.com/KellyMMeiners/status/1636076828560375811
  35. https://twitter.com/briimii/status/1636005717969715202
  36. https://twitter.com/YaronFishman/status/1635916140508479490
  37. https://twitter.com/jenniferhulme/status/1635979793106890752
  38. https://twitter.com/WSN061983/status/1636016414602452994
  39. https://twitter.com/ExUtahSports/status/1636241014611652609
  40. https://twitter.com/j_b_kennedy/status/1633453464146591745
  41. https://twitter.com/GitteBou/status/1636085136214175744
  42. https://twitter.com/vintageGardnGrl/status/1636224062182817793
  43. https://twitter.com/Karol5991/status/1635916403596226562
  44. https://twitter.com/faei11/status/1635903977555386368
  45. https://twitter.com/dsethlewis/status/1636207538025771008
  46. https://twitter.com/JJSeven13/status/1635913845465051136
  47. https://twitter.com/4runnerbro/status/1635980810175266816
  48. https://twitter.com/pamelarbishop/status/1636066264677330946
  49. https://twitter.com/VanFreyja/status/1635973790206132224
  50. https://twitter.com/chiluvs1/status/1636106079602876422
  51. https://twitter.com/realfrankbecker/status/1635931471180361729
  52. https://twitter.com/ProperChels34/status/1635876526100041733
  53. https://twitter.com/Aggie26451261/status/1636050304826327064
  54. https://twitter.com/jdcantor/status/1636144766839840770
  55. https://twitter.com/THardy929/status/1636143507483115521
  56. https://twitter.com/boerscht/status/1635951927291674624
  57. https://twitter.com/ECooperAuthor/status/1636110843070001153
  58. https://twitter.com/emmyremmyloo/status/1636089512861261825
  59. https://twitter.com/alitwy/status/1635951475288580096
  60. https://twitter.com/ergebnisoffen/status/1635882915585224704
  61. https://twitter.com/IppoAng/status/1636080736376705034
  62. https://twitter.com/longcovidlinds/status/1636020495035297792
  63. https://twitter.com/cea_murphy/status/1636041612928204802
  64. https://twitter.com/Know_HG/status/1635966094220427266
  65. https://twitter.com/turnoftheshrew/status/1636055745601970176
  66. https://twitter.com/mileswgriffis/status/1636049773953441792
  67. https://twitter.com/LC_ontheshort/status/1636085478888820736
  68. https://twitter.com/calirunnerdoc/status/1636083598146301952
  69. Added 3/19: https://twitter.com/AlexSprackland/status/1636813287080771601


If that’s got you interested, I assure you there’s quite a lot of research into the biology of long covid, and it is turning up results. For leads, here’s a quick list of random studies that popped up when I did a search on “long covid research vascular”:

Here were a few of the initial results when I searched on “long covid research brain imaging”:

I’ve only barely glanced at these, so I have no opinion on them. It’s just the beginning of a trail of clues for how healthy, active, happy people could suddenly become so ill.

Recap: I do not have long covid, nor chronic fatigue syndrome. My interest in this topic is a general desire for truth and for quality medical care for anyone who needs it.

Related, from me:

Detail of David by Michelangelo, photo by Jörg Bittner Unna, CC 4.0.

About Jennifer Fitz
Jennifer Fitz thinks health, fitness, and the practice of medicine are indeed religion topics, because, well, Theology of the Body, anyone? Home base is JenniferFitz.com (mostly Jesus-y). On Twitter @jenfitz_reads. You can read more about the author here.
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