Are You Able To Exercise?

Using exercise and physical therapy for recovery from the effects of MS, and for maintaining physical
function.

finally exercising

Postby batpere » Wed Feb 23, 2005 5:41 pm

My old neuro (an man older than myself) suggested that I exercise but I never got around to it. Fortunately my new neuro is female and, having always been more easily persuaded to do things when asked by a woman, was actually motivated to sign up for a fitness center membership and have gone 3 times a week for 3 weeks now. Her approach of saying she could provide more prescriptions to help with the problems but would rather not, and that I would see benefits in many areas if I would just stretch and exercise made it feel like the right thing to do. Except for being a mailman for 10 years during my 20's, I had never exercised, so this was new territory. I had always convinced myself before that I could exercise and prolong my life, but if all the extra time was spent exercising, what was the point?

Boy was I wrong. I'm finding that I actually enjoy it and look forward to it. I am seeing improvements already. When I got laid off 3 years ago, I noticed that after walking my kids to school, I could barely walk when I got back home (it was 1 mile each way), and things have gotten worse since then. It was rough doing 1/2 mile three weeks ago, and I'm up to 1.25 miles now before my legs feel like rubber. Sometimes hanging on to the treadmill grips I feel like a kid with training wheels next to all the people jogging on the other treadmills. Oh well - better than losing my balance and falling, which would be really embarrassing. I was hoping to be able to do the 5k ms walk in April, but that now appears to have been extremely optimistic. Maybe if this Tysabri works miracles I'll be able to walk that far for the ms walk next year. But I highly encourage anyone to exercise if possible. I know I'm feeling better all around after just this short time.
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no tysabri now, but still exercising

Postby batpere » Mon Feb 28, 2005 4:56 pm

What a blow that was today. And my neuro made me keep taking Avonex after I started Tysabri!!! Oh well. At least I have a good start on exercising that I intend to continue.
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Postby Loobie » Tue Sep 12, 2006 9:43 am

I'm new here. I exercise every day (usually a 3-4 mile run) and I do 50 push ups and sit ups a day. I have been really struggling with the pushups lately. Normally after exercise I feel energized. With in the last few months, I feel like I've been hit by a truck after 15 or so push ups. Has anyone else seen a change like this in how their muscles react? I also just turned 40 which I'm sure is some of it.

My goal is to stay with my sit ups and push ups. The running part is great (other than knee issues), but my arms and chest are saying "No More!".
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Postby ewizabeth » Tue Jan 02, 2007 2:59 pm

Loobie,

I'm exhausted just reading your post! 8O I'm 48 years old, and with MS... so if I can do 30-40 mins on the exercise bike twice a week, plus Pilates twice a week, and arm/upper body strength training twice a week, I feel like Superwoman. That is what I intend to do each week. Occasionally I do that and more. It's the New Year, I need to stick to it.
Take care, Ewizabeth Previously Avonex, Rebif & Copaxone RRMS ~Tysabri, 31 infusions, ended 9/09. Starting Copaxone 12/09, waiting for Cladribine to be approved in 2010.
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Postby Loobie » Tue Jan 02, 2007 3:15 pm

Ewizabeth,

I get exhausted too! I have recently went to every other day as every day was just leaving me too fatigued during the day. I also run like a drunk. It's really not that funny, but I have to keep things in that perspective to deal with them. I am really strong for about 1.5 miles and then the balance and strength issues kick in. I stumble like mad for about the last mile. My neighbors have even commented about it. It's hilarious since they don't quite know what's causing it. They know I have MS, but like most lay people, they don't know what it all entails.

There are soooo many days that I don't want to do ANYTHING when I get home from work. Those are the days that I make myself run. I have hated it so bad that I have started out almost crying. It's funny though, those are usually the best workouts. The days when I feel really good and look forward to running usually don't work out that way. Who knows.

Anyway, I will exercise as much as I am able and will continue to do so until I'm not able. There are many in my shoes that would not. There are days when my eyes have been bad and my dizziness is in overdrive and my legs are tingling and I just almost don't see how I can do it. But then I think about a wheelchair and a bed and the other things that so many of us face and think "When I'm like that, I will kick myself in the ass for not taking advantage of EVERY opportunity to use my body." It's almost like I'm testing myself.

For me anyway, vigorous exercise is the only way my bowels work OK on their own (without laxatives and what not). I will not go for a few days and then I'll run extra hard and it's go time by the time I get back home. I know that's TMI, but hey, we all have shit like that to deal with (pun intended :P ).

Stick to it, I know you can!!!! :D
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Postby ewizabeth » Tue Jan 02, 2007 7:12 pm

Loobie wrote:I also run like a drunk. It's really not that funny, but I have to keep things in that perspective to deal with them. I am really strong for about 1.5 miles and then the balance and strength issues kick in. I stumble like mad for about the last mile.


When I used to still go for walks regularly, I walked like a drunk. It went on for years before the DX of MS. Now I don't walk so often, but ride my bike outside when it's nice out. I can go for shorter walks, but not the power walks like before. I do really well with the Pilates. It helps build up my strength immensely.

I'm glad you're doing so well with the exercise. I hope to do more after I finish with my degree. I'm taking online classes and I'll be finished in 11 months, so I'll have more spare time to exercise.
Take care, Ewizabeth Previously Avonex, Rebif & Copaxone RRMS ~Tysabri, 31 infusions, ended 9/09. Starting Copaxone 12/09, waiting for Cladribine to be approved in 2010.
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Postby connieb » Thu Jan 11, 2007 6:56 pm

I am also a huge fan of Pilates-- strength, flexibility, balance-- I find that it helps with all of it! I'd also like to point out that all of you good people posting in this thread do SO much more than 90% of the population without any health issues whatsoever! A 4 mile run? Most people get their exercise walking from the couch to the fridge and back again! You are a tough, brave, accomplished bunch!
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Postby ewizabeth » Thu Jan 11, 2007 7:28 pm

Hi Connie,

Speaking of exercise, I just finished 20 minutes of variable cycling on the stationary bike. :) For part of it, I move my arms, and it gives me a better cardio workout. The machine has a tension control, so I can vary my speed and intensity and get a healthier workout. I try to do it twice a week at least, in addition to the Pilates workouts.

I recently started doing an upper body workout with light weights too, so I'm on my way to overall fitness. :) I hope I can keep up the pace!
Take care, Ewizabeth Previously Avonex, Rebif & Copaxone RRMS ~Tysabri, 31 infusions, ended 9/09. Starting Copaxone 12/09, waiting for Cladribine to be approved in 2010.
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Postby connieb » Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:27 pm

Ewizabeth-- Your schedule sounds a lot like mine-- I do Pilates twice a week (reformer and mat), elliptical (the kind that moves your arms as well) at home (while watching movies!) three or more times. Additionally, I started doing functional training" with a trainer once a week-- she has me do a lot of stuff with bands (great for both upper and lower body strength and so much fun!), also on the ball, and on that gizmo that looks like a big blue ball with a flat board attached to it on one side-- side crunches, squats etc-- awesome for challenging and developing balance and stability! hasn't necessarily made me more fit, but I sure feel much happier and stronger as a result! :wink:
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Postby ewizabeth » Fri Jan 12, 2007 5:19 pm

Connie,

It sounds like you're doing great! Keep up the good work! :)
Take care, Ewizabeth Previously Avonex, Rebif & Copaxone RRMS ~Tysabri, 31 infusions, ended 9/09. Starting Copaxone 12/09, waiting for Cladribine to be approved in 2010.
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