If you’re having trouble beginning an exercise plan or following through, you’re not alone. Many of us struggle getting out of the sedentary rut, despite our best intentions.
We already know there are many great reasons to exercise from improving energy, mood, sleep, and health to reducing anxiety, stress, and depression. Making exercise a habit takes a bit of time to master and you need the right mindset and a smart approach.
Studies show that for individuals with lupus, regular exercise improves one’s ability to function independently. People who exercise report on having a better self-image and are better able to cope with arising challenges. Exercise helps reduce fatigue from lupus and overall fatigue from life in general. It can help decrease depression and anxiety.
Whatever your age or fitness level, even if you’ve never exercised a day in your life, there are steps you can take to make exercise less intimidating and painful and more fun and instinctive.
Here are 5 tips to help you on your fitness journey:
Schedule movement - think about what would be a good time to work out, are mornings better, perhaps you want to go for a walk on your lunch break, sometimes an after work swim can refresh your mind.
Find your favourite ways to move - this can be fun, why not consider taking up a new dance class?
Think of movement as a gift - even though sometimes we feel pain with lupus we should always try and remember the little things we take for granted.
Find support - struggling for motivation? Get a friend or relative involved and learn something new together.
Give yourself some grace - just remember, slowly, slowly catchy monkey.
The key thing to remember about starting an exercise program is that something is always better than nothing. Going for a quick walk is better than sitting on the couch.
For most people, aiming for moderate intensity exercise is sufficient to improve your overall health. You should breathe a little heavier than normal, but not be out of breath. Your body should feel warmer as you move, but not overheated or sweating profusely.
This article is intended to inform and give insight but not treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a doctor. Always seek medical advice with any questions regarding a medical condition.