I hear from people with chronic pain that they cannot exercise and that I shouldn’t be exercising, now quite how exercising can make you ‘more ill’ I will never know, but I do know from having over 10 years ‘service’ of having advanced degenerative disc disease that some days you just don’t feel like it, plus when you first start the soreness you get from exercising can be off putting. I lifted weights and undertook insense interval training all through my back pain until I couldn’t do it anymore as my spine started to twist.
Not exercising just makes me more stiff, I get out of breath easily and I end up pulling more muscles as I am not used to moving around. I also buzz off exercising, we all know from research that exercising releases endorphins or feel good chemicals. But with Fibromyalgia the soreness from exercising can be epic. Like a mild flu feeling in our bones, exhaustion and a reluctance to exercise again. I gave up weight lifting for a year, then started again last year, only to stop again when I completely crashed early on in the year.
I’ve researched and spoken to many people that have gotten through the crashes and learnt ‘pacing’, more on this another time. Every person I spoke to exercises but it has taken many many months and in most cases years to be able to exercise anywhere near how I used to. Click here to read more about this subject.
I tried swimming once a week, only managing 8 lengths then increasing to 12 over 2 weeks, then I made it up to twice a week and boy did I feel awful. Widespread pain and severe exhaustion but I did notice my average sleep was up! It was too much too soon. I know I need to go slower. I spotted mindfulness yoga, it was relaxing and even though I looked like a baby giraffe and the crappest yoga participant ever I didn’t care, I mean no one could see me……
So I am going to take it real slow. Mindfulness yoga once a week and swimming once a week (8 lengths) for a couple of weeks, see how sore I am then move on to 2 yoga sessions and once swimming etc. Magnesium spray is a fantastic straight into aching muscles, rubbed in. I buy them from EBay, look up Magnesium flakes here and then you boil some PURIFIED water (keep tipping in till they won’t saturate anymore) then simmer and cool, add to a spray bottle and it works a treat!!
I add 2 cup fulls to each bath too. This might make you itch and come out in a rash but soon you won’t feel it, but your muscles won’t ache as much. I love the stuff.
My ultimate goal is to get back in the gym on the weights but that might be a while off yet. First goal is to slowly increase my sessions up to 5 a week 30 minutes a day and I am hoping to be 3 days a week by Christmas!
Let me know what exercise you do and how often with Fibromyalgia and what tips and techniques you have for dealing with the very painful elevated soreness post workout?