Dr's advice?

I went to the dr's yesterday to get some more inhalers and whilst I was there I thought I'd ask about exercise in general and if she thought what I was doing was ok/enough etc. Told her I was doing a lot of walking blah blah blah but that was all, to which she replied oh yes walking is by far the best exercise for keeping fit, works all the right muscle groups and keeps you active etc but don't run, running is not a good idea. I asked if she meant running isn't a good idea for me (bearing in mind I'm still 22 stone!) or just in general and she said she thought running is a bad idea for anyone as it ruins your knees and lower leg joints giving you problems later in life. Now my question to you guys is should I listen to her (for now at least) or should I just say pfft what does she know, its only her opinion after all?

As a side note, some of you may remember I said I would start the couch to 5k app this week well actually last Thursday when I was at the gym I did some running on the treadmill to see how I got on and managed several set of 60 secs running and 90 secs walking (walking at 3.5 miles an hour and running at 4.6 miles an hour - don't know if thats good, bad, or indifferent! lol) Haven't managed to get out on the road as yet to follow it up but as I have a few hours between shifts today I may give it a go today :)

11 Replies

  • Your doctor is talking nonsense. m.active.com/women/Articles...

  • That's a brilliant article, thank you! To be honest I kinda figured she was talking out of her behind but I figured she might have been saying it more for my benefit given my weight which is why I thought I'd ask you lovely people :) Thing is she was more concerned about my knees (which currently don't cause a problem!) than she was about my lungs (I'm asthmatic, albeit an under control asthmatic) which I found very odd!

  • I have read better articles about it, but I found that one from a quick Google! If you just search something like "running myths knees" it comes back with hundreds of results that say your doc is talking rubbish! Luckily for me, my GP is also a runner and we go to the same running club (well, she does, I haven't been since pregnancy!) so she's almost evangelical about it! Good luck on your run, I much prefer being outside to being on the treadmill, I hope you do too! :-)

  • Go for it! My GP positively encourages me - I'm 66 have asthma which has improved SO much in the weeks I've done. The important thing is "slow and steady"...very, very, very slow and steady to start with and make sure you land with your foot under your hip. Good luck with the program.

  • realbuzz.com/articles/is-ru...

    I love this article 'Is running good for you?' because it puts both points of view on running issues and gives a fair verdict at the end. It's worth a read I think and then you can draw your own conclusions.

  • This is another really interesting article, I like the way that it lists the pros and cons. I understand its a personal choice whether to run or not but personally I think that running is the next step for me I guess I'm just scared about starting it!

  • I was 60 when I started running. I have a mild heart problem, I'm asthmatic, I was 3 stone over weight and also had high blood pressure.

    I'm now approaching 63 I have a 22.3 BMI, my weight is perfect for my height and age. My blood pressure is well under control. My asthma and breathing haven't been this good for over 30 years. My heart problem doesn't need surgery and they thought I would need it over a year ago. My doctor encourages me to keep on running but always listen to my body.

    How on earth could running be bad for me, but we are all different and respond in different ways. When you are running listen to your body, the first sign of any discomfort ease off gradually, don't stop suddenly thats not good for you. I wish you luck and if you are still unsure why not see another doctor and ask for a second opinion.

  • Really interesting posts. I'm not the best advert for running at the moment as I have had two bad muscle strains over the last 3 months, almost certainly related to training (I'm in the healthy bmi zone & fairly fit). That said, none of the gps or physio I have seen have warned me against running. I think the injury risk has to be balanced with the benefits, of which there are many.

  • Slightly off topic, but I found this video on Youtube, which shows what can be done. OK, it doesn't cover knees, but as someone who had big knee problems, and now runs without any knee problems, I can only speak from my experience which is that as long as you listen to your body and stop if it hurts, then it's fine to run.

    Youtube ~ running for my existence.

  • I was partly motivated to take up the C25K programme by the experience of one of my mum's (mid 60s) friends who had high blood pressure and developed type 2 diabetes. With the benefit of running (I think they have found a partcular strength and now run competively) not only is the blood pressure better the type 2 diabetes is gone.

    I am wary of the joint thing but try and counter this by doing as many routes as poss along bridleways and mud/grass footpaths. I am most worried about my heart and cardio-vascular health - i know that being an ex smoker and years of very sedentary lifestyle I have significant risk. My bp is still too high but it is definitely getting better - that must be a good thing? Other thing is I know loads of people with joint problems who have never run but instead are former squash players, rugby players etc who did damage in their 20s. I think you just have to listen to your body and I am very careful about rest breaks as i think these are important.

  • I started exercising with a static bike and a keep fit book (based on Pilates) last February after being diagnosed with impaired glucose tolerance (pre-diabetes). My BP at that time was 140/90. I progressed to running and doing pure Pilates. My BP came down to 106/64 by April and I'd lost over a stone in weight. Prior to starting the exercise I also had stiff knees and ankles, having to hang on to the banister rail when coming downstairs. Since running I can now come downstairs very fluidly without hanging on.

    I was unable to exercise for nearly 2 weeks recently due to an ear infection which affected my balance. Interestingly, I was back to being stiff and creaky again, coming down the stairs I was hanging on to the rail again. Having started to exercise again now (including running) I am regaining my flexibility - which, I think, proves that running IMPROVES the joints.

    Good luck and best wishes with your C25K programme - just take all necessary precautions and build up slowly. There is only one 'expert' here and that is your own body which will tell you what you need to know. All the very best to you.

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