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Believe it or not exercise is good for you.. wait, don't scream and run.. hear me out, okay?

First... forget about everything you've had dumped on you about how all you need to do is exercise and you'll lose weight and your depression will lift and that it's all in your head.

Okay.. brain cleared of all of that? Good. Now.. lets start practicing a little common sense, shall we?

First. You have to take into consideration what condition your body is in, not just your activity level, but for many, most, of us we have to take into consideration our level of pain, threshold of pain and endurance level. If you are severely hypo, or have been hypo for some time, physical activity can be an impossibility. Something as simple as every day chores can send you to your bed for a week, unable to move due to the pain and intense fatigue. That will get much much much much better as you get on meds and those dosages are optimized for you, but in the meantime you have to face what you have to work with and make educated choices.

If walking is too hard for you, someone telling you that all you have to do is walk and you'll lose weight and you'll solve all your problems is doing nothing more than cause you to look for a baseball bat to see if you can get in one good swing before your arms give out...

For me, after months on crutches just to walk to the bathroom the magic key me was to dream up my own exercise program based on what I could do. Those exercises started out as simply stretches. In bed!

Yep... I worked out a routine the consisted of slow stretches just to get my body used to moving again, to remind my muscles of what they used to do. By doing the exercises in bed I did not have to deal with getting up and down from the floor, eliminating all the pain involved with that for my knees and my back. So I didn't avoid my 'work outs' for fear of increasing my pain. With those issues no longer a concern I was eager to do my routines. One other thing that I did was to do them as the last thing of the day. The biggest reason for me was that after I was finished I could simply roll over and go to sleep. It turned into a great way to relax at the end of the day, and I do believe the extra oxygen that my muscles and extremities received helped a lot with improving the quality of my sleep.

It took six months before I was confident enough to start adding weights. I started out with just vegetable cans. It doesn't have to be great huge weight, just something to add some resistance to help your muscles remember what they used to be able to do, to increase their strength, range of motion and endurance.

A bit of a hint.. if you are one that had a lot of issues with chronic pain, no matter what the level... here's a little rule to remember:

You'll get a lot farther, a lot faster taking 10 baby steps forward than you will get taking 5 giant steps forward and ending up in bed for a month and starting over. Set your short term goals small. Allow yourself to achieve a small level of improvement EVERY week instead of a huge improvement on the first day, then bed rest for weeks.

Topper (Linda)
aka ThyroGeek

 

 

 

 

 

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