Last reply 1 year ago

I have the diagnosis MS not that long (8 months) but I learned that it’s good to exercise. Here is my question: do you push yourself if you’re tired and your feet/legs are tingling or should you stop before it gets like that?

Add categories

Browse categories and add by clicking on them

You can remove current categories below by clicking the ‘x’.

1 year ago

I can still walk. So i push myself to do it. I used to take things like walking for granted. I have an hour break for lunch. I take my walk then. After work it is a good chance I will just lay down in the bed.

1 year ago

@carola, moderation is the key word. You just need to keep your brain aware of how your body should work.

Any increase in your core body temperature can cause problems, as you have noticed :-

1 year ago

The physio told me that the moment you start hurting is the moment the exercise stops doing you good. The challenge is to find exercise that you can do for longer before the tiredness kicks in. I have found a big difference between activities, e.g. exercise bike = 5 mins. swimming 30 mins. Once you start experimenting you’ll know what’s worth it and what isn’t.

Little more often is better – don’t overdo it as it will become counted productive. Moderation is the key.

Ps don’t underestimate the rejuvenating effects of relaxation.

1 year ago

I live by the rule of, if you do not feel up to it, don’t do it.
If you push yourself too much then you may end up doing harm to yourself.

1 year ago

Hello @carola, I’d say yes to pushing yourself, but only in terms of pushing yourself to do a little exercise, whatever that is. Never push yourself past the boundary to prove a point, and adjust things accordingly to how you’re feeling on the day. I was diagnosed last year, but at the beginning. In that fourteen months or so, I am still trying to establish what MS, but I am learning my limitations. I also know when to quit and give myself a rest. Which is quite often! All the best, glad you’ve found Shift x

1 year ago

I’m still trying to get the balance just right (it’ll probably never happen). I try to exercise whenever I feel physically well enough, which seems to be working for me. I do push myself when I feel well, doing kettlebells, running and yoga. Having a range of activities allows me to to tailor things to how I feel.
A bit of numbness in hands and feet doesn’t stop me but fatigue or visual symptoms does.
It probably will hurt to start with if you’re not used to exercise but the good news is that it gets easier the more you do it and it has helped with my fatigue as I’ve got fitter😊
Whatever you choose to do, just be safe.

1 year ago

@carola Find something you like and start small – as your fitness increases you can o more…have back up/different exercise for different days – I run a lot because I like it and I’m training for a half marathon but I had to give up on the idea of making it in a certain time – it’s all about the distance for me now BUT on days I can’t run (for whatever reasons) I do extra stretching, my physio exercises for more or watch a pilate/exercise video on youtube to do some exercise at home or I just go for a 30min walk at lunch.

Exercise – particularly aerobic exercise is very good for brain health & overall wellbeing. I hope you find a set of exercises that work for you

@carola for years doctors didnt recommend exercise to people with MS because their symptoms got worse during it. However now its clearly accepted that exercise is good for you and your MS. Recent studies are concluding that it actually slows progression.

While no one is exactly sure why, here is one important thing to note. While there are a number of benefits overall, one of the largest gains is when the body begins its restorative work of healing from injury. When you stress your muscles, unlike chronic stress, its actually good for you. The reason is that results in short term damage to muscle fiber which your body sends signals to heal. Those signals are received throughout your body.

I would strongly encourage you to research this more, but its important to do both aerobic exercise as much as possible (hill climbing, running, swimming or anything you can do to get yourself out of breath). The second thing you should do is muscle strengthening and weight lifting. This can be done at home with just your own body weight. It doesnt have to be any particular muscles, just the wider range the better.

There is a fine line between pushing to hard and not pushing enough. It important that you push yourself to the point where you body engages the processes to become stronger but not so hard that you are unable to continue.

A simple way to get there is plan on exercising 5 or 6 days are week. Start at a comfortable amount where you have no discomfort and see if you can maintain that for a few weeks (some things may get progressively worse for a bit so thats an indication that you might be doing too much). Once you are able to go a couple weeks and maintain a stable situation (which can change anytime), its time to push a little each week.

If you are a runner/walker etc , have 2-3 pairs of shoes and rotate them. Different shoes will work muscles slightly differently. In the end it will cost the same as all your shoes should last much longer. It will also let you rotate new pairs in over time rather then a sudden switch if one pair wears out.

Do both types of exercise for sure to give yourself the best chance of slowing down progression. My wife has MS and we have both added to our daily routine. Its hard to find the time, but after doing it for over a year, its gone from something we dread to something we love (or almost).

1 year ago

I volunteered for an MS research project on MS & exercise that was being done by a nearby university. What I learned is that it was ok if I worked up a sweat as long as the room that I was in was cooler. Prior to that study, I was afraid to work up a sweat. After that study, I no longer fear working up a sweat as long as the room is cool. The study probably benefitted me more than I helped the study & college students. But since then, I have belonged to a gym & go every morning before work. Even in the summer when people want to be outside, I go to the treadmill at the gym.

1 year ago

Thanks so much everyone, it’s been a great help!

Join to reply to this post.

Become part of the community so you can chat, compare and learn from other MSers.