Exercise and FM

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by mariella, Jan 26, 2003.

  1. mariella

    mariella New Member

    Is exercise recommended for people woth FM? I tend to feel better when exercising. Joints and everything feel somewhat better. For instance, I can sit with crossed legs for longer periods of time. Only thing is, my preferred method of exercise is jogging and among other mysterious symptoms I have been experiencing over the past few years that I never had before, I now experience frequent cramps while running. Though my joints do feel better, is an FM person just screwing up her body even more in the long run through high-impact exercise such as jogging, more so than a non-FM person?

    I have not been able to jog for the past few months due to recovering from an ankle injury but have been intending to start back up again any day now.
  2. debbiem31

    debbiem31 New Member

    Hi there. I guess the answer to your question is all relative to who you are, how bad the pain is, and how much better it feels when you do a certain excercise. I, for one, would never think about jogging or running, but I have DDD in conjunction with the FM.

    Basically, IMO, if it hurts, you're probably overdoing it. The 'No pain, no gain' motto just doesn't apply around here.

    Usually the best exercises are low impact and don't put a lot of stress on your muscles and joints (swimming is a good one). It sounds like your body is trying to tell you something, you should probably listen...
    Debbie
  3. Achy-shaky

    Achy-shaky New Member

    Much of research I've done suggest low-impact exercise and jogging is as high-impact as you can get. Weight strengthening is also highly recommend if done properly. It's very important to listen to what your body is telling you and discuss with an FM specialist/therapist if possible. I suggest reading material in Library on this site - one good one is called "Fibromyaligia: Improving through Fitness"

    Good luck!
  4. healing

    healing New Member

    I have to agree with Mel. Although there are many days when I'm just too fatigued or achy to do much, even a small amount of exercise helps. Not only does it strengthen you and keep you moving, it helps your attitude, and we all now know about the mind-body connection. I also agree that jogging can be detrimental. Other, non/low-impact cardio exercise is great, and stretching (yoga, pilates, etc.) is very beneficial.

    In the end, it's you and your docs who should make this decision. The question is, do you feel good, better?
  5. mariella

    mariella New Member

    Thank you all for your responses.

    It makes me very sad to think it may be in my best interest to stop engaging in one of the most enjoyable activities in my life. But if it is the difference between getting an adrenaline thrill now, and being able to walk later on in life, I guess I may have to think about cutting out the adrenaline. There goes my dream of running a marathon someday . . .

    Oh well. I suppose the elliptical trainer is worth a shot. I also appreciate the advice about strength training. I totally hear you about the popping noises all over! Sometimes I'm a regular Ms. Jiffy Pop. I have never pursued weight training over a long period of time because I prefer a long lean body over a bulky muscular one, but I understand that if done properly, it does not have to mean bulking up.

    Thanks again to everyone, and I wish you strength in your personal battles! I look forward to continue reading all your stories, and sharing mine.

  6. klutzo

    klutzo New Member

    I empathize with wanting to jog. Before I got FMS, I jogged 4 nights per week. I loved running. I never hurt when running, while walking made me hurt and feel off balance sometimes. I ran even though I had had surgery on both knees and been told to never run again.
    I now walk my dogs, use a treadmill and a ski-machine. I recently learned the hard way not to use machines daily, but to vary what I do. You will have to figure out what works for you, but it is worth it.
    In ten yrs. of running an FMS support group, I never saw any lasting improvement in a person who did not exercise regularly.
    Best wishes,
    Klutzo
  7. northwoodssue

    northwoodssue New Member

    Hi Mariella:
    It's always great to hear what other fms suffers can do physically. I agree with what all the others have said. Exercise is very important to keeping us mobile and flexible. However, the type of exercise, unfortunately, changes with fibro. I used to walk 3 miles a day and get plenty of other exercise too. I now call myself fortunate if I can walk when I get up in the am. I try to walk a mile when I can, but not too frequently now. The pain should be our judge as to what we can do.
    Have you ever tried yoga? Everyone here knows I am a BIG FAN of yoga - but only the gentle, stretching form of hatha yoga. This type only lubricates your joints and muscles and keeps you flexible. Why am I so sold on yoga???? I couldn't move my hips much when I started, also my neck. But yoga helped me to be able to move again. Besides the exercise, the deep breathing and mediatation is good for you also. I love it and couldn't ima gine not doing yoga. You also work at your own pace, not the instructors , or anyone elses. Just do what you can do without pain. You'll be amazed just what you can do if you try it. I take classes, but started out with a tape. The best one I tried is called Lilias yoga for beginners and I got it at Target.
    good luck
    sue