Before I get into the post I want to put a little disclaimer out here. This artcile is based on my personal experiences. I'm not a doctor and I'm not saying you should follow my routine if we share a diagnosis. I'm just sharing what I find helpful for my own personal sake.
I've never been into sports or exercising when I was younger because I was always in so much pain and fatigue afterwards without knowing why.
People with chronic illness(es) often get called out for "lazy". The reminder of bad physical pain after the activity and the misunderstanding of able bodied people makes us want to stay away from any sorts of exercise.
I think the main issue here is, that we all keep looking at exercise as if our bodies were healthy. But that's not very surprising because look around you.
Many gym membership ads are based on looks and impressing, your teachers will give you grades at school, we only find the most physical demanding sports cool.
Society has taught us to be the best of the best at every aspect of life. Everyone experiences this pressure so let alone people with a disability.
It's our job to take better care of ourselves and adjust an exercise routine appropriate for our physical conditions. Exercise because the endorphins make you feel good, because it helps you to set your mind off things and because it's fun. Work on the reasons why you're doing this. Try to prevent yourself from crashing and find a good balance.
Over the years I developed an exercise routine that works for me. I used to crash hard every time after a workout and stopped exercising for months. I started again very slow within a rehabilitation program which helped me figure out what I like, what helps me feel better or worse.
This is what my routine looks like:
- daily: walk my dog
- 2 times a week: physio exercises at home
- weekly: go to physio or join a yoga class
Of course there are days when I can't do any of these and the only thing I can do is rest and hoping things will get better soon. And that is okay. Try not to make yourself feel guilty for skipping a certain workout. I know I do this too but I know for sure it will make things even worse and doesn't benefit your mental health at all.
Also if you're not well enough for a certain exercise, maybe change things up a bit? For example, if sitting up straight is too demanding on a certain day, google some yoga exercises you can do from bed or reschedule that physio session to another time.
You don't have to stick to the plan every single day. Especially if you have other priorities. Like a party for example. You're gonna need all your energy for that activity. The last thing you want is not being able to enjoy it because you're still exhausted from that walk you made this morning.
If you are really not in the mood, it's a good idea to have more than one option. It will make your routine less boring.
Everyone's routine will look completely different. It's fun to get inspired by others but try to adjust things to your health situation. Listen to your body and most important: enjoy!