Old 12-23-2016, 10:58 PM #1 (permalink)
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Default Exercise

I've been trying to do better about getting healthier and conditioning my body to function better living with fibromyalgia. After years of being sedentary and living on pain meds I have finally decided to change my lifestyle. I'm off pain meds and on 1200mgs of Gabapentin instead. It works fairly well, but it seems like I can do very little without causing pain. So I've been trying to exercise to see if I can train my body to get used to moving without the pain meds.

My current work out routine is walking a mile (20 minutes) on the treadmill, doing the ab weight machine with between 10-30lbs depending on how sore I am, and 10-20lbs shoulders. I don't do anything else with legs because I think the walking is enough considering I have to walk the rest of the day.

I haven't been doing this often at home, but while I'm on vacation at Daddy's place in New York I've been trying to do it every day or every other day. So far I've done it two days, and I was pretty sore today. Really sore.

I was wondering if anyone else has tried to exercise, or what you do, or if you think my routine needs to be modified in any way?
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Old 12-24-2016, 08:52 AM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

I think the main thing, for me anyway, is to keep that routine same time every day, same routine. I was walking 5 miles a day consistently for 6 months and it did help but if I messed up the routine or missed a day, I was in a world of hurt. Also if you feel really sore maybe cut your workout so it's a little less, it is easy to overdue it with exercise. I also take gabapentin.
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Old 12-24-2016, 11:21 AM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

I had enforced rest from 2 years of severe pain flare and weakness to point i stuck in bed or sat mostly in a lounge chair....walking became almost impossible and without exercisenow my muscles have also lost tone so more problems from measurable muscle weakness not just the severe weakness that some of us get with CFSand fibro.

I would say just go with what your body is telling you..walking itself is good exercise and even if it is 20 minutes every other day it willat least keep you active.

We have to put up with sore painful muscles pretty much whatever we do to varying degrees...so long as its sore and not crippling pain i would keep doing it but watch out for signs its too much by measuring against your normal pain levels..which only you know. Good Luck
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Old 12-25-2016, 10:36 AM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Hi Brandi. I am in my mid 50's & have osteoarthritis & fibromyalgia. I have been off work since April. I am on a combination of Duloxetine (Cymbalta) 60mg + Aripiprazole (Abilify) 7.5mg. I also exercise 3 times per week. Initially, I would have said the exercise was going to kill me, however I have now been almost pain-free for 3 weeks. I have about a level 2 in my knees. Here's what I do: treadmill & bike 10 minutes each, seated row 50lbs, chest press 50lbs, lateral pulldown, 50lbs, leg press 70lbs, seated leg curl 50lbs, hip abduction 50lbs, hip adduction 35lbs, pulley biceps 7.5lbs, pulley triceps 12.5lbs, overhead DB press 5lbs, single leg lifts 122 X 1- reps, glute bridges 2 X 10 reps, bird dogs 2 X 10 reps, plank, dead bugs 2 X 20 reps, balance board 30 seconds, and a series of mat exercises. This is after 24 sessions. I am amazed at both my progress & the reduction in pain. It has to do with remapping the brain & breaking the pain cycle. Initially, I thought it was a bunch of hooey. I am now feeling better than I have in years. I alternate weights & stretching exercises. I don't do all this in 1 session. I do the bike & treadmill every session, in addition to walking my dog an average of 5km 4-5 times per week. I have to say that there is no way I could have made this kind of progress without a personal trainer & physiotherapist who designed my program & cheered me on.

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Old 12-25-2016, 01:55 PM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

wow Hsmommy well im glad you have found excercise helps you...just goes to show how different we all are or even if the word fibromyalgia actually covers many différent illnesses ....i have tried to walk to the nearest post box and back repeatedly and many times my legs and knees seize up to point I am limping. Its only a few houses away and round the corner a tiny walk.

I have also been trying to walk circuits around my lounge to exercise...sometimes i can do 15 or 20 minutes and at the end my whole lower body is about 8 pain scale gradually increasing the more i do.

Ive been doing this for about two months...some days i can do it some days i simply can't...no choice no pushing through possible as my legs also loose strength and wont hold me up.

I think many people are lucky that they are not hit so hard and exercise does help others it does the reverse.

Maybe i have more CFS or ME symptoms along with the pain and this is perhaps the difference.
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:37 AM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Wow HSMommy!! Go you! I am so impressed. I don't know if I will ever get to that level, but I do want to increase my workout at some point, So far it is going well. The pain has practically gone now. I take my first Gabapentin of the day an hour or 45 minutes before I go work out and two Aleeve when I get back. I now have increased my walking to 1.25-1.30 miles. I've increased the weight on the abs and lats machine to 30lbs. I've also increased the number of sets I do on the abs machine from two to three. So, I'm slowly building while the pain decreasing. It's helping my body and I think I'm building strength.

I'm also trying to build a healthier lifestyle. I'm trying to cut out processed and fast foods. So far all I've eaten here are sandwiches, wraps, and home cooked foods. I've had greens, protein, rice, eggs. I think I'm doing ok. I should probably eliminate the rice because someone told me gluten is bad for fibromyalgia, but I like it lol. I can't deprive myself of everything.
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Old 12-27-2016, 10:53 AM #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

I used to be extremely fit. I lifted weights daily and went hiking at least once a week....in the mountains, steep hikes, usually for six to eight hours each hike, without taking more than a ten minute break during that time.
Now, not so much.
I am very depressed that I am not doing those things any more.
but due to my hands being painful, and severe carpal tunnel in both wrists I have too much pain to lift weights any more.
I could go hiking, but I no longer have a dog who can go hiking with me and it is just too hard to get myself out the door all by myself. And the trails I used to hike on are now crowded with people. I don't go hiking in order to be around a bunch of other people! So I am stymied on what to do for exercise. I guess I need to find hiking places that other people have not really discovered, if such a thing is possible..........

I think the worst thing about Fibro isn't even the pain. It is the discouragement I feel.
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Old 12-27-2016, 04:21 PM #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Sunkacola maybe u should just play some music while u hike.block out the ppl .i loved walking.but I get so stuff after an hour.right now the dog can't walk more then 20 mins due to back problems,so it is hard to walk few at all.
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Old 12-28-2016, 11:50 AM #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Forgetmenot, thanks for the suggestion. But I don't really like music most of the time, and I don't own a music player that can be carried. (I don't have a fancy phone either). Music is just noise to me, and I am really into quiet and silence.
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Old 12-28-2016, 01:41 PM #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

I just wanted to add that swimming is a great exercise if you have access to a pool (and the water doesn't irritate your skin). If you don't like swimming you can also do something like aqua jogging. For me, being in the water soothes the burning pain I always feel in my hands and feet.
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Old 12-31-2016, 11:57 AM #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Would the swimming make you sore after awhile or do you find it does not? I'm a beginner swimmer, I started learning when I was younger, and I can swim, just not properly lol. I always wanted to go back and learn the different types, so do you think at 28 now it would be too stressful on me? I always heard it was the best form of exercise.
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Old 01-09-2017, 09:26 PM #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Hi! I hope it's okay if I jump in on this conversation. First I want to give everyone exercising a big high five for doing it, especially with pain! I hope I can bring encouragement and support to others on this forum. Second, maybe my experience posted on here will help somebody. I used to be an athlete through my freshman year of college. I stopped playing soccer and doing track and field in college because the schedule was too demanding traveling and practicing for sports and music (I was a music ed major). That's when I realized I felt ill if I didn't exercise everyday. I didn't know it was fibromyalgia. I'd never heard of that. So I planned my own workouts using my fitness course text and what I had learned in class and sports and got up every morning at 5 am, except Sundays, and did elliptical, stretching and lifting. For years that controlled my fibromyalgia. I also went to bed every night at 9pm. I think that worked for 8-9 years until I got put in bed rest with my second pregnancy. I even worked out straight through the first pregnancy. If I missed a day I felt sick, so I didn't miss much. Later I have done running, swimming, biking, soccer again, cross training, dance videos. The last big thing I did was a sprint triathlon and I did that because the pain got so bad I couldn't sleep and I wasn't getting good medicine and I couldn't stand it anymore and I was just like, what if I just force myself to get into really good physical shape and see if that does something to this disease? Well, it seemed to work. Except I should have strengthened my core more I'm told. So now I do back and core exercises. But I cannot tolerate cold or heat anymore. I get a tremor in the heat and the cold hurts, so my husband got me a wetsuit to try for swimming. I run inside on the treadmill now. I have to be really careful to make gradual changes in my workouts, or I will flare. That's one thing I've definitely learned. And about six years ago I started using lyrica or something also. Not just exercise.
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Old 01-10-2017, 03:27 AM #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Hi.

I've noticed the same thing Hope. Most of the year I go out on my bike 2-3 times a week & do 20-30 miles, I trained hard last year to do a 50 mile charity bike ride and never felt as bad as I do during the winter months when I don't do any form of exercise at all. Just now I'd struggle to get on my bike, let alone spend 2-3 hours on it but I'm sure come spring time when I get back out on it my pain will gradually ease. Physio told me something similar yesterday, it's all about finding the balance between no exercise and pain and too much exercise and pain, you have to find somewhere in the middle that suits you.
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Old 01-13-2017, 03:13 AM #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

I think it is never too late to learn to swim - it took both my kids a very long time (i.e. 15 years) but I finally got them over the hump. I had to schedule individual lessons for my older son, which did him a world of good.

When I was first diagnosed I had not swum for a long time. I was in decent shape from playing soccer, but my pain levels were pretty bad from a big flare up. I started out just kind of paddling around during public swim. Being around all those happy kinds kind of cheered me up too. Eventually I worked my way up to swimming laps.

With some practice you can learn to recognize the signals you are overdoing it. When I am swimming, I pay attention to when I feel sharp, stabbing pains. Some times I can ease them by changing how I am moving (for example, if my back hurts, I am probably not using my abs enough). Sometimes I just need to go a little slower. If the pains don't go away after about 10 minutes or so, it is time for me to stop.

The more regularly I swim, the better I feel. Walking also helps me feel better, but it doesn't keep me as strong.

If you are not sure about swimming, you can try aqua jogging. You put on a belt that keeps you buoyant and then just kind of run through the water. The nice thing is that your face isn't in the water so you can bring a friend and chat. And you don't sink when you rest

I like swimming better though because the whole process of controlled breathing combined with the movements is very soothing. Kind of like a moving meditation I guess.

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Old 01-16-2017, 06:54 AM #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Exercise

Hello everyone. Can any one help me. I am very over weight with fiibromyalgia, lupus, sjogrens, diabetes, and hypothyroid. My energy is almost non existent. I need to exercise. I don't have access to a pool. I live in a rural area. I am 63, and I want a better life than I have now.

Thank You.
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