Posts tagged ‘exercise’

March 27, 2019

#566 – Live Better with RA – Tip #3

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Tip #3 – Move/Exercise

The last thing you may feel like doing is moving, when even talking hurts. The adage “move it or lose it” applies, especially when you have RA. If you’re concerned that you are doing more damage, consult a physiotherapist for appropriate exercises for RA.

In addition to keeping you mobile, strong and flexible, the right amount of exercise can help kick inflammation to the curb. I always notice a huge improvement in mobility, particularly after my swim.

UC San Diego Health has this to say about exercise as an anti-inflammatory:

The brain and sympathetic nervous system — a pathway that serves to accelerate heart rate and raise blood pressure, among other things — are activated during exercise to enable the body to carry out work. Hormones, such as epinephrine and norepinephrine, are released into the blood stream and trigger adrenergic receptors, which immune cells possess.

This activation process during exercise produces immunological responses, which include the production of many cytokines, or proteins, one of which is TNF — a key regulator of local and systemic inflammation that also helps boost immune responses.

Speaking of moving and exercising, I’d like to share what Rick, my online acquaintance, has accomplished. His go-to exercise is cycling, which combined with healthy eating (see Tip #2), has allowed him to become, in his own words “a big loser.” Way to go, Rick!

A big round of applause to all of us who are losers, and to some of us who have been on the weight-loss/weight-gain teeter-totter and have finally settled into a good place/weight.

In case you are in the midst of a major flare, I’m swimming two extra lengths just for you! (It’s my new thing. Consider it an energetic gift for someone who is unable to move/exercise. 🙂 Whether I’m stretching, lifting weights, swimming or dog walking, I’m finishing my “usual” routine by doing two more – be it lengths, blocks, lifts, reps, minutes or holds.)

Can you guess what Tip #4 will be?

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January 17, 2019

#562 – An Exercise Tip for Lazy Bones

 

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I make sure I get some form of exercise on a daily basis. I sleep better, but the big pay-off is that I feel better.

Having Holly helps, as dogs need to be walked in rain, hail, sleet or sun. However, there are days when I feel like a lazy bones. Marianna’s Law as Applied to Exercise usually gets me to the pool. As incentive, I agree to do half my swim. Invariably, I end up doing the full workout, since I’m already in the water.

If I’m feeling lazy I recall all the times in the past when everything hurt to move. When I was in excruciating pain before my hip replacements. How my feet felt before forefoot reconstructive surgery (Warning! Graphic image on that page!) When I even needed help pulling the blankets up at night. Yes, I think about that. Then, I reflect upon how grateful I am that I can go for a Holly dog walk, or enjoy a refreshing swim.

Listening to my body means that unless I am in agony or are in dire need of rest, I give my lazy bones a wake-up shake and make sure I do something physical, even if it’s only to get up and dance around the living room. Dancing just isn’t Holly’s thing.  Her predecessor, Murphy, would often join me whenever I said, “Murphy, dance!”

Mobility – please don’t take it for granted! The best way I know to honour my mobility, is to move. Plus, it’s a great way to build in the practice of gratitude, which has enormous health benefits.

This also goes for all you able-bodied people who prefer the couch. If you can move easily, do so! Do it for those who cannot.

Move it, don’t lose it! If you’ve got it back, be grateful and move it again!

March 20, 2017

#520 – Fitness in Sight

There is something to be said for the adage, “Out of sight, out of mind”. It is often used when referring to a mess of some sort. However, I’ve found that when fitness equipment is out of sight, it is too often out of mind, and that’s not conducive to increasing fitness.

Working from home, I make sure that I take little exercise breaks.  In addition to my dance breaks, dog walks and swims, I do some exercises at home. It’s easy enough to glue my butt to the chair when I get wrapped up in a project.

While having my weights, stretch bands and balls in a visible place won’t win me a page in a decorating magazine, it gives me wins in other (more important) areas of my life: flexibility, strength and endurance.

As you can see, I have a number of exercise “toys”.  A wobble board is tucked underneath my perch, er recliner, which I’ll use while watching movies. Sometimes I’ll roll the stability ball into the office to work at the computer, or I’ll do some weights, which you can see in Holly’s toy box. I have different coloured/strength Therabands®; I tied the black one to the foot of our (very heavy) coffee table to work primarily on my adductors and abductors. (If you want to get started now, here are some exercises you can do to strengthen these 2 often-neglected muscle groups.)

Be sure to check with your healthcare team before starting any new exercise program.

My rheumatologist recently shared the name of a new resource with me called Exercise is Medicine®. This is a global health initiative that is designed to encourage primary care physicians and  healthcare providers to include physical activity as a part of the treatment plan for patients. As this initiative builds momentum, you can expect to hear more about this during your office visits. Wouldn’t it be great to get a jump on this and be able to tell your healthcare team about the steps you are taking to address this area?

How are you incorporating fitness into your day?

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June 11, 2012

Four-Legged Personal Trainer

One of the many reasons I love having a furry four-legged friend is that they get you out walking, regardless of the weather or whether or not you feel like going. It’s like having a live-in personal trainer who demonstrates exuberance at the mere mention of the w word with the wag of a tail and a toothy smile.

I am fortunate in that I have access to a number of places where I can walk with my dog on natural surfaces. On surfaces that are designed by Mother Nature. On surfaces that are kinder to arthritic feet.

How do you ensure that you get out for a daily constitutional?

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