Exercise with extreme pain and fatigue - Fibromyalgia Acti...

Fibromyalgia Action UK

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Exercise with extreme pain and fatigue

Louisajanepalfrey profile image

Hi all,

I am desperate to be able to move more and do more, plus lose weight. What is the best way to exercise? I feel like my feet are broken and standing causes back pain, what can I do?

Thank you

12 Replies
Welshcatlady profile image

Do you have access to a swimming pool? Swimming is good, gentle excercise.

Aishahb5364 profile image

I’d start with seeing a podiatrist to see if you have any foot problems causing the pain. Next I’d reduce your carbs and eliminate all processed food and sugar from your diet. That’s the only thing that worked for me in reducing my pain levels to the point where I could start walking daily. It was difficult in the beginning but as time went on I could walk for longer and I recovered quicker. I still have periods of flare up but not as severe. As soon as I relax my food choices my body starts hurting more.. Good luck

ChocNana profile image

Same here wish I could swim had to sell my bike as well. I wish U luck and hope someone has an idea to help u x

Cat00 profile image

I agree with others I would try swimming. Although one thing I found out about myself during lock down was that previously everytime in the past that I've tried to run my feet hurt so much within 10 minutes I generally found I'd injured them and had to stop. But during lockdown I starting jogging (did hate it though) and I found that as long as I didn't run to music I was fine. It appears if I can hear my feet landing I'm much better and could run for 20 minutes.

25rosclare profile image

I use the Joe Wickes videos on YouTube - you can start with chair exercises and then you can build up from there to exercises for Seniors etc. I fill the fridge with fruit like grapes, strawberries etc so when I am hungry I can grab a few.

I don't weigh myself as that can be depressing - I get a favourite item of clothing that is a bit too tight and keep trying it on so I can see how much I am losing the weight.

Good luck - you have to be in the mood to start - seeing myself in my underwear in the long mirror was my incentive!!

Yassytina profile image
YassytinaFMA UK Volunteer

Swimming can be a good way to excercise without over doing it, some try yoga, for me now it’s small walks and some gentle stretches xx

Midori profile image

Swimming in a warmer than usual pool is the best all around exercise, but if for some reason there is not a pool available, I would suggest Tai Chi. it is less hard on the joints, etc., than yoga, especially as the years advance and you become stiffer.

Tai Chi is a slow, moving set of exercises, it flows from one form to another, never hurrying, and exercising all parts of the body. In actual fact it is a Martial Art, which is learned at slow speed, but can be sped up should it become necessary. Most Western folk use it for suppling and balance.

I think all of us have gained weight over the Covid times; I know I have, and for Fibromites it can be difficult to lose again, especially when our fitness has been impacted by lockdowns.

Walking is another good exercise, although it might not appeal to folk with painful feet; but weightbearing exercise is necessary in order to keep the strength of your bones, as not going out means lack of Vitamin D due to lack of sunlight on the skin, and the body says 'where can I find more Calcium? Ah! the bones are not being used much, lets take it from them!' and then the bones start to be depleted of calcium, which can lead to Osteoporosis., and to fractures.

It's worth everyone who has been inside for months to get a Calcium blood test.

Hope this is some help,

Cheers, midori

PVK1954 profile image

Fibro exercises. Hi Louisajanepalfrey. I found walking helped but it can be embarrassing stopping and sitting on someone's garden wall for temporary stops. In house I got a exercise bike - safe as you are sitting down and have handles to hold on to. Adjust the resistance to how you are feeling. When I started I regretted getting the machine as I could only go about a minute and a half! I found I could listen to music or TV with eyes closed and that helped me keep going a little longer. I have now moved on to an elliptical machine and continue to get a bit stronger each week.

aytias profile image

Hi Louisajanepalfrey,

I have to disagree with many people here. I was also advised to start swimming when I got the first problems as you're supposed to float and it's easier etc. Bear in mind I've spent my childhood swimming in the sea 6 months per year. In hindsight, I regret it and it wasn't really helping. I was always struggling to stay above water (the buoyancy in a swimming pool is less than in the sea water) causing my neck to get tighter.

What I've found over time that helps a lot is resistance exercises with rubber bands. Specifically, when I do exercises with my hands, I make sure I wrap the band around my 2 last fingers and leave the thumb, index and middle finger free ( since they engage the shoulders ).

Also, I focus a lot on exerices for the psoas (hip flexor).

In terms of food, if you want to get a small boost before you start the exerise, you can have a few nuts high in carbs (i.e. cashew nuts) maximum 10 mins before starting. Avoid sugar and fruit (and generally anything fructose based).

All the best.

dorking15 profile image

I discovered Tai Chi and Qi Gong which I attend with a wonderful teacher. Helps me mentally too. I can swim but only just and very nervous in water so that didn’t suit me.

dorking15 profile image

I saw a podiatrist and got orthotics which have helped immensely. In other countries feet treatment is treated as seriously as eye testing. Should be same here I believe.

Sleepyhead22 profile image

I always found trying to exercise on my own I'd overdo it and end up in too much pain to want to try it again. If it was me I'd speak to my Dr and ask for recommendations. There's a pain management clinic where I live that offers physio and exercise videos for people with chronic pain. Your GP might be able to refer you to something similar in your area. I've lost over 3st doing very minimal exercise (compared to normally healthy people) with ww too so it's amazing what a good diet can do for weightloss. Dr's can sometimes prescribe ww now as well depending on your weight. I used to think I would need to exercise a lot in order to lose weight and it made me almost give up since I am so limited. Not saying exercise isn't important or that I'm promoting one type of diet just that taking control of what I was eating really helped me feel better physically and mentally and I was able to achieve my desired weight while being limited physically mainly through diet.

All the best

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