Rosalie Ungar is the author of IN A HEARTBEAT: The Ups & Downs of Life with Atrial Fib.
My new word for ‘exercise’ or the ‘e word’ is now ‘body movement’. I’m discovering that the ‘e word’ frightens and intimidates many adults of all ages if they have normal family commitments, a demanding job, aches and pains or are frequently tired and depressed. I’ve had them all as well as just being lazy. However, I’ve always felt better and with elevated energy when I have a body movement routine.
I do feel that my past body movement routines have helped to keep me out of atrial fib for 11 years.
In last week’s blog, I mentioned my lifetime of health problems and how body movement has kept me going at a good pace. I also said that my 81 year old body requires that I change my ‘e’ way of doing things:
- One year ago I stopped using a personal trainer. I had developed a pain down the side of my left leg and irritable bowel syndrome. I tried going to an ‘e’ class but had more leg and some back pain when I did, so I stopped altogether for several months.
- I went to a chiropractor for treatment over a 3 month period. Along with an activator device to help spine related parts, he gave me some mild body movements to do as illustrated in a brochure. I’m able to do them in my pajamas in the morning on the floor or in my bed or standing while holding on to a wall or table. They took 7 minutes and nothing hurt.
- Then Ed decided to do them with me. He had a more rigorous ‘e’ routine and his 82 year old body had just been diagnosed with atrial fib. We did the body movements together as Oscar, the cat, watched from the foot of the bed.
- That was 6 months ago. We do more stretching movements and increased the time to about 20 minutes. It’s actually fun. We added a 15 second plank on the floor, 10 squats from a bench and pushups, not on the floor but from a table or the wall.
- The back is better but I still use a heating pad while watching TV in the evenings, never sleeping with it though.
- Leg pain is gone and the irritable bowel syndrome is much better, especially if I continue to eat small amounts of foods that I know won’t irritate my insides.
Best of all, the only body part that hurts is the right hand. That’s from carpal tunnel, scheduled for surgery December 17th.
Ed feels better from the daily body movements too. More next week about his atrial fib, sleep apnea, meds and his upcoming heart ablation.
Attitude is everything along with body movement. Meanwhile read my memoir, IN A HEARTBEAT: The Ups & Downs of Life with Atrial Fib.