A Day In The Life Of Fibromyalgia: Exercising
I know that talking about fibromyalgia and exercising in the same sentence is a turn off for many fibromites but before you tune out this topic, please remember, I have had fibromyalgia for thirty-one years. I have experience about this subject and that experience may surprise you.
Over the thirty-one years I have had fibromyalgia I have been on a roller coaster of success and failure with trying to establish an exercise program. I will save the details for another post. In short, though, I’ve only found three forms of exercise that I have been able to do for any length of time, walking, swimming and weight lifting. Again, the details are worthy of a separate post. I just want to say I have found appropriate exercise to be beneficial to partially manage fibromyalgia and here is my story that drives that point home.
I have had several sicknesses unrelated to fibromyalgia over the past month or so, but in the middle of all that, I have managed to spend some time, less time than normal, on the treadmill. The past eight or nine days I have had a middle ear infection or a large fluid buildup behind my eardrums. It makes me dizzy and seriously distorts my hearing. One day I hear better than I have for thirty years and the next I can hardly hear anything. One day almost all noise bothers me and the next day I can watch TV. All the while my equilibrium is out of whack. This means that it’s very hard to exercise, for anyone and especially me where my primary exercise is walking on the treadmill. Even holding on to the bars, no way.
So for about that last eight or nine days I have not been able to exercise with one small exception; I managed to walk about seven or eight minutes on the sidewalk with my walking sticks and my daughter walking along side of me in case I fell. That small amount of time didn’t help much.
Yesterday I noticed my abs was sore, along with my thighs, buttocks, and most of my back was sore. It was the kind of sore I didn’t have while I regularly exercised. Those of us with fibromyalgia are expert at reading the different types of pain. This pain wasn’t the type that makes you think “I’m going to die” pain, but rather, it is the miserable and uncomfortable pain. Normally, it is a tolerable pain, but for us fibromites it is way too much pain.
For the last two years of exercising, I have felt physically good about exercising but never wanted to find out if it was helping my pain levels, to do so would mean I deliberately stop exercising for a while. Exercise is good for you no matter what, so I just kept going. Now that I have been benched for enough time to notice, I can see that to some extent, my pain has been relieved by exercising.
But here is the main point. In spite of the increase in pain caused from not exercising, I have not felt the need to increase my pain MEDs. Yet, as soon as my dizziness is over, I will resume my walking on a treadmill or on the sidewalk. It does make me feel better enough to want to keep exercising, but doesn’t affect my pain levels enough to influence my pain MEDs up or down.
Troy Wagstaff ©
This post is not medical advise or medical suggestions. It is just personal observations and opinions.