Exercise recommendations for Grave's Disease? - Thyroid UK

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Exercise recommendations for Grave's Disease?

Hi all, I put on some weight after my metabolism slowed down.

I cannot run or cycle because of the heart palpitations. I do some yoga instead + moderate upstairs walking.

How do others cope?


9 Replies

It's very difficult. My head says go for a brisk walk my body says you must be joking. Yoga is good so is Pilates. Hope you find something to suit you.


Hello there, before I became hypo I ran, I did weights, I swam, I did classes and rowing and cycling and loooong walks..Now I do everything except the running which knocks me sideways in terms of energy.

I also have to listen to my body more as I used to push myself all the time. I can’t do that so much although I still test the wAters now and again as it’s in my nature.

I think there are runners on this forum who still run. I think it’s a personal matter to each individual and how you are getting on with being hypo. Sometimes, I just stop for two or three days and just do walking or swimming, then get on with gym again. Depends on my bod.

From reading things on here I think you will have to experiment and find your own wAy with the excercise thing.

I wish you all the best though and hope ucanfind something that fits well with you.

1 like

hello Northie am very interested that you can exercise regularly. Before I became very ill in 2011 I used to exercise regularly and my job was physicaly demanding since 2011 if I get a half hour walk in twice a week I'm doing well, it is a huge disappointment to me. Previously I practised yoga most days, was an ardent pole dancer and went out dancing all night almost every week. My idea of a holiday was Ashtanga yoga every morning followed by swimming in the sea twice a day.

How did you get back out there? The best I have managed was a 5 week run of 3-4 times a week beginner level weights...then there was the inevidable crash, got back to it after a two week break and lasted only a week and then crashed again and so on.

Did you get your levels all sorted before you could return? Were you able to exercise regularly even if your TSH was to high and T3 too low etc. Do you have good levels of ferritin?

Is there any good advice or programmes designed for people like us with hypothyroidism, anemia, adrenal fatigue, hashimoto's, CFS, Fibromyalgia etc? Does it make much difference what of these conditions a person has or are they all much the same when it comes to overcoming the exhaustion and getting regular exercise....can we ever be fit again?


Hello there,

I’m afraid I can’t advise you on what there is out there for us as I’m not an expert. I’m a regular person who got diagnosed roughly 4 ish years ago.

I didn’t have any knowledge or even heard about it prior to being diagnosed and a rough time in the early days with various symptoms. I still have them but the level differs from week to week.

I can only relate my own experience. I was and am a powerlifter type of person, and do conditioning work in between lifting the weights and this consists of complex work, swimming, tyre flipping and boxing etc.

My thyroid levels are up and down and as I said in the last post, I just have to take each day as it comes. I deffo don’t do running now though, for me it’s too much. It’s not in my nature to give up on things so when I feel I can’t do training, I walk....if I can’t do a long walk ido a short one. If I feel weak and can’t do weights I do body work on a mat. I’ve learned to adapt but I won’t give up.

I eat well and try to nourish myself properly. I don’t do fad diets and ahem....I do like a drink now and again... :). Just gotta adapt I think.

So sorry I can’t help you more than this. I feel a bit lost with it all but the people on here know loads and have helped me with questions so I look on here and just do my best.

Wishing you well. X


Ps...sorry fir long post durrrrrr...

I didn’t answer your question at the front. I didn’t get my levels sorted out first before I did excercise, I never stopped before or after, although I was a 5-10 mile runner couple of times a week. That I can’t do now. As said, I’m still learning as I go. Last week I swam 25 lengths of pool and felt fab, this morning I got about 6 out and had to do the walk of shame back to the changing rooms lol!!

Mental attitude is a big thing for me.

Anyhooooo...... best of luck with your stuff. X


I am in awe of your energy and strength - mental as well as physical - I would love to know more about your weight training regime? could you tell me or write me discription of what you do when? obviously i realise i need to do less weight and less reps but I just have no idea what to do anymore...hearing what a thyroid collegue does might be a place to start?


Well, hurrr hurrr....thank you....don't be in awe cos if u saw my red sweaty face and inelegant stagger to the shower room afterwards you wouldn't be impressed.

I truly don't want to be unhelpful but I don't think it would help you to know what I do as I go by my own body and how I feel on a day to day basis. I have a few years training under my belt so I guess you could say I'm just in tune with my bod.

You need to find your own way with the weights.

I'm no expert at all. You should know what u can handle, so start there? Think about what you want to achieve, a balanced regime, cardi, weights, or mainly cardio, or just weights. I like the weights so stick with that and the conditioning work just helps to make me feel good, and helps with the weight as I piled on nearly two stone in a short period of time when I started meds. That was upsetting, bah!.....

Find a routine online, there are loads, adapt it to what you want out of it and work smarter. Listen to your body, use strict form and eat well. Also remember to take time out, lay on the floor with your feet up, listen to music, relaaaaaax.....and repeat. Good luck. You can do it, and if you can't, take a breather and find what you can do. We are all different with the hypo thing, one size doesn't fit all. Know that's not what you wanted to hear but I think it's a more truthful answer.

Ps. You don't necessarily have to do less weight, I didn't. But.......I became wiser about how much I did.

Wishing you well.


Hi - I was diagnosed hypo 14 yrs ago & I was a ballet dancer before diagnosis, so very fit. I find I can’t do lots of the cardio stuff now but I teach Gyrokinesis & Gyrotonic method exercise. This method is similar to yoga but with more 3 dimensional movement. If you have Gyrokinesis or Gyrotonic in your area do give it a try, it really helps to stimulate and energise without having to be high intensity (to find a teacher - gyrotonic.com).

If you can’t find that then I would recommend yoga. Systems like Gyrotonic and yoga may not feel as intense as running but they actually work the entire body it is just that the immediate muscular feedback is not as high. However they may be better for your body long term because they are very holistic, working not just the muscles and joints but also the fascia, nervous system, breathing and circulation, and they do not over stress any one part of the body.


Thank you! x


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