Before becoming chronically ill I used to love exercising. Outside of making time to do it, I never had to put much thought into it. Other than changing my shoes or clothing, I never had to prepare my body for a workout. Afterwards I could go on with my day and do whatever I wanted. Since becoming chronically ill I have struggled with working out regularly because of how unpredictable my diseases are and the pain that exercising adds to my already painful life. However, this year I decided to make a commitment to exercising as much as possible and finding ways to decrease the amount of pain that I experience afterwards.
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My Pre-Workout Prep
To lower or limit my post-workout pain, I began preparing my body for the beating it is going to receive. I purposefully plan my workouts early in the day so that I won’t be tempted to physically exhaust myself prior. I never schedule appointments or errands on my scheduled workout days. I spend the hours prior to listening to my body. I pay close attention to areas that are hurting more than others. After identifying the most prominent pain sources I begin treating them. For example, if my knees are aching I will relax with my Oska Pulse on them for an hour before. This usually eliminates that pain and makes my workout possible. Sometimes I leave my Oska Pulse on one knee throughout my workout. If experiencing stiffness in my neck and shoulders I will use my TechCare TENS unit beforehand. I always prepare my muscles by rubbing my favorite CBD lotion on them. A drop or two of Triniti CBD under my tongue helps with pain and tension as well. If my body is feeling overly inflamed I will take 1 or 2mgs of an Indica Cheeba Chew. Light stretching also helps prepare my body. Every day is different, some days I need to do all of the above and some days only a small combination. While not necessarily convenient, the hours I spend prepping have reduced the amount of pain that I would have experienced had I not prepared at all. Prior to prepping, the lightest of workouts would knock me down for a week or two. So far prepping has limited my downtime to a day or two.
My Post Workout Recovery
Pushing my body to do what it doesn’t want to do always produces physical pain. It is unrealistic for me to think that I won’t be in pain after exercising. The trouble with diseases like psoriatic arthritis, fibromyalgia, and endometriosis is that I never know what to expect. Some days my legs give out and I am unable to walk for hours after. Other days I may only experience an elevated pain level in my joints. And until every stinking adhesion is ripped from my sidewall, I will always be treated to a higher level of abdominal pain. Because of this I never schedule anything of importance after a workout. There are times when I must medicate for pain immediately after working out, which usually leads to taking a nap. I may only need to use my Oska Pulse and TechCare TENS unit for a couple of hours or on and off for the rest of the day. My CBD lotions also help with the muscle tension and pain following a workout.
While it takes a combination of different treatments to prepare for and recover from a workout, there is one in particular that has made exercising on a regular basis possible. I can honestly say that if it weren’t for my Oska Pulse, I would have given up right after my first workout. The Oska Pulse has been a Godsend for my knees. After my first workout my legs gave out and I struggled to walk down the hallway while using a walker. My knees were swollen and hurt like never before. After 2 hours of treating them with my Oska Pulse, I was able to put my walker aside. After 6 hours of treatment, the pain was completely gone. I would have never believed this to be possible if I hadn’t experienced it myself. By the way, if you are interested in purchasing an Oska Pulse for yourself, use promo code DIVA to save $55!
As you can see, making time to workout requires more than clearing an hour out of my day. It requires special planning before and after. Do you prepare your body before exercising or do you just hope for the best? Do you have a post workout recovery plan in place? What are your favorite and most effective ways to prepare and recover from exercising?
Wishing you a day filled with many reasons to smile,
The Disabled Diva