Exercise: how long until I feel a difference?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by cynicaldog, May 3, 2009.

  1. cynicaldog

    cynicaldog New Member

    When I was first hit with FMS/CFS in 1996 I was extremely athletic - I had a very low % of body fat, was completely toned, and could run a marathon in a competitive time. I woke up one morning feeling like I had the flu and my body went downhill from there. For a very long time I tried to fight the fatigue and to push through it, but I never had any success with that. Over the next 12 years I gained 60+ pounds and got to the point where just walking through the grocery store made me exhausted.

    Today I'm happy to say that I've lost 50 lbs. and am at a healthy weight again. The weight loss has eliminated a lot of pain I had in my knees and feet. My body is a complete stranger to me, though: I'm slim but everything is flabby. My calves just droop. My forearms are saggy. My stomach is flat but I have no visible abdominal muscles. I feel like a Raggedy Anne doll. I've read so much about how exercise can be beneficial for FMS patients, and I truly miss my daily workouts, but I'm stumped about how to approach an exercise plan.

    For the last week I've taken our two dogs for separate walks in the evening, walking for about an hour total, but it's a leisurely walk (they're elderly, arthritic dogs). When I come home I'm slightly tired, but I don't feel like I truly "worked" my muscles. I did these long, leisurely walks for 6 days and didn't feel any negative cumulative effects -- I didn't really feel anything at all. Saturday night (day 7) one of the dogs seemed extra energetic so we went for a longer walk, and I tossed in a bit of jogging. I felt really good when I came home because it was exciting to run, even a tiny bit (I didn't even get winded so I didn't think I was pushing myself too hard). By Sunday morning, however, I felt like a freight train hit me -- I had to take extra pain meds to be able to take the dogs out Sunday night (I didn't want to disappoint them), and I was dragging through two very short walks. All I wanted to do was get home to sleep. I didn't get a "second wind" once I got out walking... I just dragged the entire time. The pain I'm feeling today doesn't seem related to walking/jogging or those specific muscles, it's just an all-over FMS ache.

    All my pre-FMS life I was active, and I always looked for the feeling of "good pain" to tell me that I'd working my muscles appropriately. Now that I have FMS, I don't know how to gauge the benefits of the exercise I'm getting. Do long, slow walks even count as "exercise" if they don't raise my heart rate and I don't feel any muscle fatigue or soreness? Is there any value to doing more strenuous exercise (like jogging), if it means I can barely move for the next couple of days? If walking/running is the main means of exercise available to me, how do I figure out how to get the full benefit of that mode of exercise? I'd love to be able to join a gym to consult a personal trainer, or go to physical therapy, but I can barely afford to eat -- walking is all I can muster right now.

    Any advice/anecdotes/suggestions about how to approach exercising are appreciated. The dogs think a daily walk is the most exciting part of their day, so while I'm underwhelmed so far, they're pretty happy!
  2. 3gs

    3gs New Member

    The old days of pushing excerise to the point of pain are over.

    The worst thing you can do is push your bodys limits and it sounds like it let you know it. The tendencie we have to push when we feel good(i understand)which results in a crash does more harm in the long run.

    You are lucky you can walk your dogs and that is a good workout for fibro. I pushed the limits of my body and I am now housebound if not bedridden.

    be kind and gentle to your body stop when tired before you feel pain
    it sounds like your thinking is excerise will fix this it wont but congrats on weight loss[This Message was Edited on 05/04/2009]
  3. sascha

    sascha Member

    i have cfs- can't walk much at all- it just hurts too much. i can make it to my car and around grocery store- and around the house- that's about it. thank God for my little car.

    i know what you mean about desperately wanting exercise- i used to ski and walk and hike, and now can't do any of it. and i also gained weight. then i took off 35 pounds. then i put 20 pounds back on. i'm working on this now again in a very gradual way, and am losing bit by bit again.

    i think we do have an intolerance for exercise that is part of our conditions. we have to figure out our limits and stay within them, or else there's a backlash, which is what happened to you.

    i know- i HATE the muscle atrophy that happens- it causes me grief. i couldn't even tolerate two minutes on a stationary bike. i crashed a little time after i tried it. people cannot understand this phenomenon. it just seems crazy, but research from experts who know, has documented negative physiological changes following exercise for cfs people- there is no point pushing it. i imagine there's a similar component for fm people.

    if you can walk, that is terrific, and should help you over time. some people seem to be able to work their way out of this inability to do any exercising- one person i talked to said lifting weights, starting out very very slowly and carefully- helped her recover over time (anaerobic exercise). and there's a person, i think his last name is Campbell, who through graded exercise program pulled himself out of cfids- you can find information about his program online. i think he's Bruce Campbell.

    anyway- rejoice you can walk- and be careful not to overdo- Best, Sascha
  4. babyk902

    babyk902 New Member

    and i can only tell you that it is BEYOND frustrating.. with summer around the corner i want to be able to exercise even more.. the problem is with CFS/Fibro, we have severe limitations.. even though we may have some sort of energy one day, we may not know we've overdone it until the next. My advice to you would be to start off slow and just pace yourself, keep doing what you've been doing.. ANY exercise is good exercise, even though your heart rate may not be up or you don't feel like you're that fatigued after.. Start slow, if you're feeling good keep up the walks every day and eventually step it up a notch and start walking longer/farther, or maybe even jogging a little bit. I think what always pushes us back is when we try too hard, we think we're getting exercise and doing something better for our health, but in reality our body can't handle it so we're essentially taking a step back in our progress.

    I think what is also crucial is our diet and the foods and drinks that we intake. The better you eat the more you will probably be capable or closer to accomplishing more exercises rather than if you're not maintaining a healthy diet. I know that when I actually eat better and watch my intake on certain things, I feel better as a result, and can manage through certain exercises without feeling like I got hit by a bus the day after.

    Walking is KEY.. and the best exercise that you can do, if you can also do some sort of strength training (without over-doing it) you can do that on your own at home, doing either lunges, squats, leg-lifts, the "plank", etc. I do these every night but i make sure that i don't do too many reps or I don't strain myself too much bc I know that if I do I will be paying for it the next day.. and I feel absolutely great, if not better than I have been feeling but just doing little by little.

    good luck!!!
    [This Message was Edited on 05/04/2009]
  5. shelbo

    shelbo New Member

    I was never such a serious athlete as you but I did run for a few years with the Harriers (don't know if you have them where you are...I'm in the UK) and I loved it... It was very exhilarating and there is a huge buzz involved, I agree. I can completely empathise with you wanting to feel it again...

    When I first got ill I was very active and I went from a busy lifestyle to one where I could hardly drag myself out of bed and could barely focus through the pain... Like you, I tried to fight my way through it...big mistake...!! I too ended up putting on weight but am having trouble dropping it...I would love to know, btw, how you lost your weight? Well done!! :)

    As much as it hurts on a mental level, you have to learn to pace yourself. If you try to operate at your previous level of activity and intensity, you are going to keep hitting a wall! Your body is telling you that it cannot cope with what you are giving it to do.... You have to listen to your body carefully when suffering with FMS, ME, CFS.... You have to resist the temptation to 'push' the boundaries... That Sunday morning your body was sending a clear message to you that it wasn't ready for jogging... You may have to accept, hard as it is, that your body may not recover enough to be able to jog... It is best, imho, to put jogging out of your mind...at least for the time being.

    I do believe that for some FMS sufferers exercise can be beneficial (correct me if I'm wrong someone!) but it's still a case of finding what your body can cope with...
    You say you take your dogs out for an hour...if you can handle that without suffering any ill effects that's great... Personally, if I could do that I think I'd do two half-hour walks...

    Of course walking still counts as exercise! If your can cope with it I read somewhere recently that when you are 'spent' intense exercise raises cortisol levels which is bad...especially for you. This article recommended that a good exercise to do was to walk at a slow, relaxed pace for 3 minutes and then walk at a faster pace for one minute, for a total of half an hour. This apparently allows your heart and lungs to benefit without raising your cortisol levels. Not all of us would be able to do this even but you might be at a stage where you could try... You really need to monitor how you feel not just later that day but the next or even the day after that to ensure you are not having a delayed reaction to the increased activity.

    If you keep trying to push, you will only end up reaching a point where you are actually able to do less than you can now...that's the nature of the beast I'm afraid...

    You could try keeping a diary to monitor how you feel after trying to do different levels of activity to find out your baseline activity point...if that makes sense?? I mean find out what you can do with no ill effects and then if you want to and feel that you can, very gradually build on that...as soon as you feel the symptoms kick in drop a level...

    I have found a rebounder useful. I cannot always do it but I read somewhere that NASA believes 10 mins on a mini rebounder is equivalent to a half hour jog.... Also, with a rebounder there is no tension on the joints and it gets the lymphatic glands working which is good... If you can incorporate some gentle rebounding in with no ill effects, it's really beneficial for improving heart and lung function. I know you are hard-pressed right now but if you can save I think it's a good investment... You might get one in a sale... The other thing you can do is try an exercise bike set on a very low tension for slow, short bursts and once again measure your reaction. I would, at this point, though, choose one or the other.. The key with these DDs is not to get ahead of yourself...and remember there is no such thing as 'good pain' for us... and we don't get 'second winds'...

    Please, also, don't under-estimate the value of walking (some here are bed bound/ house bound). There is great value in walking for you as well as for your furry friends :) !!

    I don't want to come across as being rude or offensive but you are not in the same body if you get me... You need a mind reset. You need to begin, in your mind, to accept you are not that super fit athlete anymore and maybe never will be again (and I know that's so hard!)

    Having been a serious runner, you probably know a fair amount about nutrition but just incase I'll say: try to eat lots of veggies, some fruit, good quality protein etc and plain water. If you drink or eat stuff with artificial sweeteners stop....I think if you do you might see a fair improvement...

    Consider this too: there is a nice lady here (Shananegans) who has had great improvement by going gluten-free. She was diagnosed as having FMS and iirc it turns out she was celiac! I hope I have the right person... I am experimenting with going gluten-free myself right now. It may not be the case but is worth a shot! It's very hard to stick to but most people see results within 3 weeks if it is indeed a problem for them...

    I feel fish oil helps with joint pain. I like Nordic Naturals Omega 3 oil or Carlson's Very Finest Fish oil (neither of which are liver oils which I'd avoid). Vitacost.com has the best prices and pretty good shipping rates. A lovely lady here called Jaminhealth is a great exponant of grapeseed extract which you can get at vitacost as well...

    If I can help any further just ask :) Shelbo

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  6. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    I don't have FM, I have ME (aka CFS, CFIDS). However, I relate to that all over body ache you describe - for me it feels like every muscle in my body is full of lactic acid. For many with ME that aching is a big aspect of post exertional malaise.

    I don't know how clear your diagnosis is but the advice for FM and ME are very different.

    Good luck to you,

  7. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    The best thing about a Harrier Hash is drinking beer out of your shoe! No, the best thing is watching someone else drink beer out of their shoe!

    Peace out,
  8. cynicaldog

    cynicaldog New Member

    Wow, thanks for such a great assortment of replies and responses. I'm glad to read that so many people feel that walking, even slowly, counts as "exercise". My fibro has gotten worse and worse over the years and I've seen repeated mentions of exercise as being beneficial, so it's something I finally want to try. I have opioids for pain, I take thyroid medication for Hashimoto's, I'm on Cymbalta... there's not a lot left in the medicine cabinet to try.

    To the person who asked about my specific diagnosis, I was told I had fibromyalgia about 6 years ago, although I've had the symptoms for 13 years. When I initially got sick I had all the signs of CFS though -- I had debilitating fatigue & weakness, to the point I fell asleep in the middle of conversations, but I didn't have pain. My symptoms wax and wane and change in no discernible pattern... I'll go for months with muscle pain and body aches (like the lactic acid burn someone described), and then I'll feel physically better but want to sleep 18 or more hours per day. I'm just coming out of a fatigue phase and I'm more about the body aches right now (I'm sure that will change eventually). I've been going to a physiatrist (rehabilitation specialist) for three years and he just calls what I have fibromyalgia, but he prescribes pain meds and mental stimulants (like Provigil or Adderall). I've read books where doctors use the terms FMS and CFS interchangeably, because they believe it's all the same illness. I've never encountered a doctor in the US who uses the term "ME", although I'm familiar with it.

    I realize I'm lucky to be able to walk the dogs, but I also know I'm having a "good phase" right now and I want to make the most of it. I appreciate those of you who understand why I want to exercise -- my body used to be my friend, and I really miss that. Up until a year ago I had access to a swimming pool, and I know I've gone further downhill since I lost my ability to just putter around in the pool 6 months out of the year. Everything I've read insists that exercise will eventually help me feel better, but it's often missing details of how the exercise should feel, how to expect my body to respond, etc. Like all of you, I want to feel better -- FMS is holding me back from being able to lead the life I want, and I've already lost my entire 30s to it. I miss working and having a social life. Maybe exercise will let me reclaim something, no matter how small. If it doesn't, I won't have lost anything for trying, and I'll have spent some quality time with my pets. They don't see a lot of me because of the amount of time I spend in bed.

    Someone asked about weight loss, and how I'd done it. I'm no genius about this, and I can't promise my weight loss will stick (check back with me in a year!), but I've spent the last 18 months choosing quality over quantity, learning to only eat when I'm hungry, and snacking on high fiber foods when I'm sure I'm hungry but I've already had a fair amount to eat. I love almost every type of food you can mention, so any diet which doesn't allow me to eat what I want is doomed to fail. I tend to eat between 4 - 6 small meals a day and may not have any "main meal". I've had to learn that not every meal needs to have a meat, a veggie, a starch, and dessert, and that it's okay if I leave food on my plate. Those latter things I've been learning for a few years, but they seem to have finally sunken in! I can't afford to eat out, and that's also helped tremendously - if I crave something like pad thai, I need to make it from scratch. Raisin bran has been a good friend to me, actually -- there's a store brand I get (Trader Joe's) which is really chewy and crunchy, doesn't have added sugar, and it's loaded down with fiber. I'll eat a big bowl of that with skim milk and without guilt anytime I feel generic "hunger", and it's helped counteract my opioids and keep me full :) Anything with lots of fiber I'll eat quite freely -- raw vegetables, low-fat popcorn, certain granola bars, some dried fruit, etc. I still eat ice cream, but I buy the fancy gourmet brand in the smaller package and I either make it last by eating a spoonful here and there, or I eat it fairly quickly but don't replace it on the next shopping trip. In other words, I still eat whatever I want, but I don't eat it all the time.

    My life is full of "luxuries" that I know other FMS patients may not have. I don't have a husband and kids who are demanding to live life on a normal schedule... I have a partner who also has FMS, and quite a few pets. I can eat cereal for dinner, sleep all day, walk the dogs at 2am and it doesn't affect anyone else. I'm sure exercise is also seen as a luxury, but as I'm lucky enough to currently have the time/lifestyle where it's possible, I really want to give it a shot. If my FMS doesn't improve then all I've wasted is time.

    I'm going to go look up the couple of exercise plans which were mentioned in this thread. Thank you again, everyone -- I truly do appreciate your thoughts. Oh, If I'm ever on "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" and I get asked a question about the Harrier Hash I'll now know the answer!
  9. Sacajawea2

    Sacajawea2 Member

    Swimming is the only exercise I can manage...once in the water I can push myself longer than on land and get past the initial "15 minute" phase to release the lactic acid. I can't wait for summer to start up so I can swim again. I hope next year to be able to swim year round w/ an indoor pool. I feel so powerful in the water (always was a swimmer) and wish I could be a mermaid, lol!
    Water aerobics did me more damage, but just simple swimming and light stretches, etc in the water give me energy!
    Thanks for explaining your weightloss secrets! I've recently gained weight and need to get it off.
  10. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member


    Sounds to me as though you are able to listen to your body. It also sounds like you take a sensible approach to life in all areas - you and I have exactly the same relationship with icecream!

    You also have the benefit of a knowledgeable witness to your experience - priceless! Did you find each other post diagnosis or did you share some kind of toxic exposure?

    Unlike SJ (Hi SJ!) I don't seem to "release the lactic acid" for several days following overdoing but I'm not at all sure that lactic acid is actually the problem - it just feels like a build-up of something toxic. And, it doesn't always hit right away which is pretty classic.

    There is much evidence to suggest that exercise is counter-productive with ME but I believe that intelligently and carefully keeping yourself at max. capacity, and not pushing beyond, is best. There is also evidence to suggest significant cardiac involvement. The heart is a muscle, too.

    Listen to your body. If you are enjoying walking when you are able you will naturally pick up the pace or lengthen the walks for the pleasure of it. Your body will tell you if that was a mistake. It may not tell you until tomorrow but it will tell you. Maybe keeping an activity journal, as opposed to the more negative sounding "symptom journal", will help you keep track. You really want to avoid pushing into a crash.

    If you have ME/CFS/CFIDS it probably won't be like training in the old days which produced a fairly predictable increase in tone and strength.

    I think one must approach this like Goldielocks: not too much, not too little... and be on the lookout for bears.

    Peace out,
    Rafiki (the woman, not the monkey)

    ETA The cardiac involvement may not be muscular but, rather, neurological, or structural, or... but one does well to remember that anything that is affecting all muscles in the body to the point of failure may also be affecting your heart.
    [This Message was Edited on 05/04/2009]
  11. AuntTammie

    AuntTammie New Member

    I just wanted to tell you that I can so relate....I used to run marathons, too, and have trained for a triathlon, and it has killed me not being able to do so anymore. I have ME/CFS and FM and some other fun health issues, as well. I do still exercise, but it's nothing like what I used to do. I have found that the only way I can increase the amount I exercise (& even then it isn't a big increase) is to break my workouts into two separate ones.....like if I were you, instead of walking for an hour once a day, I might break that into 35 minutes one time and 30 minutes another time....net increase is only 5 minutes, but it's still more, and eventually maybe you could then go to 35 minutes both times, then to 40 one time and 35 one, etc.....or start to throw in a little running one of the two times.....I would be really cautious about this, though, and would only do it a couple of days a week to start, and really monitor how you feel the next couple of days afterwards
  12. Pansygirl

    Pansygirl New Member

    I was never overly athletic before my fibro hit but I was active and used to be always doing things. Not anymore.

    I do try to walk a little each day if I can, some days 5 minutes and sometimes I can make it around the block with my dogs but I have to go on how I'm feeling that day with how far I walk . some days just walking to my mailbox is enough exercise. ;(

    Swimming has also been helpful for me since getting fibro. But I can't do anything more strenuous than this or I suffer big time.

    When I first got sick I had a PT person trying to get me to do a very physical routine to get my heart rate up and I thought I would die! No more of that for me.

    Hope you feel better .

  13. cynicaldog

    cynicaldog New Member

    Hmmm.... I wrote out another reply last night and thought it was here, but I can't find it. I don't think I said anything that was a no-no, so perhaps my browser was just being petulant.

    Mostly, I was answering Rafiki's question about my partner also having FMS. When we first met 13 years ago, I was the only one who was sick, but she was "lucky" enough to get the same diagnosis a few years later. I'm pretty sure my onset was triggered by stress/ptsd, whereas her illness was more specifically tied to a back injury and surgery. In retrospect, I think she always had some symptoms of FMS, but they didn't get really bad until after her back surgery. We've both become sicker since moving into a newly constructed home, and there are times when I've joked (half-heartedly), about whether or not the house is making us sick. There are so many things which factor into it, though -- having a house is financially stressful, we live under the flight path for Nellis Air Force base and have read about fuel dumps and chemtrails -- I don't know if we'd feel better if we lived someplace else, and the thought of physically packing up our stuff and moving makes me want to weep.

    I know I couldn't ask for a more understanding partner, because when I complain about pain or fatigue, she knows *exactly* what I'm talking about. On the other hand, it would be nice if one of us was "normal" so our lives were a bit better. Neither of us can work a conventional job, so we're always looking for work we can do from home. We have terrible financial problems because of the job issue and our medical bills. It's also hard to get needed chores done when we both feel awful, so the laundry sits until we're desperate for clothes, and the dishes sit until we run out of spoons. We used to live in an apartment with a roommate, and in retrospect it was nice to have a healthy person around to help us keep a foot in the real world.

    Thanks to everyone who doesn't think I'm being greedy by wanting to run around the block :) I've read of a few world-class athletes who've been diagnosed with CFS yet have managed to continue to compete, but I've never read of one with FMS. I'd love to meet those CFS people and ask how they managed to break free of their illness. I remember an American speed skater at the 2006 Olympics who supposedly had chronic fatigue syndrome, yet somehow she'd kept training and was competing. I can't even imagine how that's possible.
  14. S-Elaine

    S-Elaine Member

    COPYING Info. I posted about EXERCISING on 10/8/2008

    If you look up my USERNAME by clicking on it ---- scan for the post "ANYBODY INTERESTED IN EXERCISING" & you will see the other people who added to the message.

    Good luck & I'll paste in my personal info. below with my initial post.

    I have both FMS & CFS. Initially within the first year of being diagnosed, I became 100% bedridden and could not even walk or feed myself.

    Lifting up my arms was something I was not able to even do. I had to be carried to the bathroom & also fed like you would a child.

    For such a long time, I had tried to start up exercise programs and nothing seemed to help, nor could I stick with one.

    Finally, I started about 6 years ago with walking for just a few minutes with a WALKER.

    I was only able to make it to the end of my driveway before I became exhausted & turned back around to come into my house.

    Slowly, I gradually built upon that with going just a little further & increasing it only ONE time per week. Example, I'd just try to add on a few extra minutes or make it past 2 more houses in my development.

    Before I was able to use a WALKER, all I could do was crawl around on the floor to get around in my house & that helped my legs to become a bit stronger where I could stand without having them collapse.

    When my legs became strong enough, I was able to walk without the WALKER now. I continued with very slow walking for about 2 to 3 months before I saw any change.

    Then, the benefit of a little extra energy & not being in so much physical pain were the first 2 things I noticed.

    Again, slowly, I decided to move into different forms of exercising with only being able to do about 5 to 8 minutes a few days a week.

    More improvements I noticed were a continual decrease in my pain level & then having some days where I was practically symptom free.

    My Specialist sent me to a Physical Therapist to check my form on every exercise I do & to make sure I was not putting extra strain on other areas.

    I learned how to “modify” exercises to suit my body because I have to be very careful of my lower back and my right shoulder. That is where I have the most pain, when I do have pain.

    I moved into Yoga, Pilates as well as light weights.

    I have consistently been exercising daily for the past 3 years.

    My Specialist requires some form of exercise for all patients because he sees many who benefit from it.

    Even if I am so exhausted, I still make the time to mildly exercise & STRETCH and go at a very slow pace. The pace of practically a TURTLE!

    STRETCHING is very important as well as a good night's sleep. Your body is able to restore & repair itself when you get into the deeper (Stage 3 & Stage 4) of sleep.

    For me personally, the exercising has decreased my physical pain from my FMS and for my Chronic Fatigue, I do get extra energy.

    I know everybody is different.

    Some may enjoy “Pool Therapy” and do best with that. Some will do best with walking and doing more will cause a “Flare Up”.

    Of course there are those with these illnesses where any kind of exercising is just impossible.

    Before I was able to get out of bed, I would sit on the side of my bed & do exercises just by using my own body weight.

    Only lifting up my arms & then lifting up my legs.

    What I cannot do is anything aerobic. Not for me, as that is too aggressive for my body.

    Just wanted to share for those who might be interested in starting up an exercise program.

    Please start out VERY slow with only 2 to 5 minutes a few times a week. After several weeks, increase slowly from there.

    PROHEALTH offers some very good supplements when exercising. (If you click on the "STORE" tab, you will find what they offer.)

    Both D-Ribose as well a Glucosamine I can recommend.

    Please check with your doctor before you add in supplements & discuss your ideas on exercising to get the direct input from your Specialist.

    == Elaine

  15. LindaJones

    LindaJones New Member

    thanks for posting
  16. cynicaldog

    cynicaldog New Member

    Thanks, Elaine... sounds good! I got an interesting book a few months ago called "Stretching Anatomy", and I've discovered that stretching can help relieve some of my pain when a body part is throbbing/nagging at me. It especially helps when my legs are jumpy and aching. I read an article recently where the author claimed that proper stretching can be just as beneficial, or perhaps more beneficial, than weight training. It's nice to know that stretching might actually be a form of exercise, and not just a lead-in to it.
  17. cynicaldog

    cynicaldog New Member

    I'd forgotten to thank you for the information about Campbell's Graded Exercise program. I'm reading about it right now :)
  18. fibromickster

    fibromickster New Member

    I have been walking for about 3 years now, with finally getting to 2 miles per night. I really don't think i feel too much of a differnece from when I first started but I do know that it is good for you, it keeps your muscles moving and your blood flowing with is always good.

    My yellow lab loves his walks and I do too, it is my relaxing part of the day for me to just walk and look at nature and say hi to the neighbors as i walk by. I love it.

  19. cynicaldog

    cynicaldog New Member

    I wish we had a bit more nature around here, but on the outskirts of Las Vegas, it just seems to be a lot of bugs. Mostly what I see on my walks with my dogs are black widow spiders, and the hotter it gets, the more of them that appear. Tonight there were so many of them, and they're just gigantic. Back when I lived in New Mexico (prior to getting sick), I'd take my dogs along for walks or bike rides and I'd see Canada geese, roadrunners, lizards, freaky huge millipedes, and even the occasional coyote. Now on my nightly walks I could actually do with a little less nature. At least I haven't run into any scorpions this year.
  20. S-Elaine

    S-Elaine Member

    Stretching absolutely is a form of exercise & I benefit from it a great deal.

    I need to do extra stretching for my back to “reduce pain”. They are just simple, basic moves & I only use my own body weight.

    By incorporated Yoga and Pilates movements, the stretching feels so good for my body.

    Exercise is not going to get rid of your FMS or CFS, yet it can minimize some of your symptoms.

    I believe it also depends on “how active” you are each day as to the role exercise will play.

    I cannot work Full Time. My body and brain just do not allow that for me. When I did, I literally was in my doctor’s office 3 days a week for Pain Management. I continued that way for 9 months before I finally had to resign.

    Part Time is all my body is capable of. Therefore, perhaps I see more benefits from exercise.

    Also, we all are very different when it comes to the symptoms we have and the severity of how these illnesses affect our lives ---- meaning the “quality of life”.

    Some of us go to 100% bedridden and we never really know why. We all suffer and struggle in different ways.

    I do know when dealing with CFS, it is super important to not push too much because then you can trigger a “flare” or the “crash & burn cycle”.

    == Elaine