An active lifestyle is essential to a healthy life. This is true in the extreme for those living with Cystic Fibrosis. If you have CF, exercise should be an important part of your daily routine.
Why? Because it helps you! People with CF who exercise have a higher rate of lung function and lead a more active life. Exercise, coupled with medication can help fight and manage Cystic Fibrosis.
Finding a workout schedule that fits can be a difficult, but the benefits can be well worth the challenge. When looking to choose activities that will help you increase your daily exercise there is an important questions to consider: Do you actually enjoy the activity? If you enjoy the way you exercise you are more likely to stick with it.
Cardiovascular Activities are great exercises for Cystic Fibrosis
When you’re looking for exercises it is important to consider whether or not they will help you, and in what ways. Cardiovascular activities are important to a person with Cystic Fibrosis because they strengthen your lungs and heart. Running and biking are two great examples of cardiovascular activities.
When it comes to exercising with CF safety is key. Pay attention to the weather, what sort of gear you may need for your activity, your lung function and how your body feels. If something feels wrong pause to make sure that everything is okay. Be prepared and give yourself the energy you need to succeed. Eat well and drink plenty of water to ensure your body is getting the nutrition and electrolytes it needs to be able to exercise.
Always have a conversation with your doctor before starting new activities. Some activities can make conditions worse. Having an exercise test ordered by your doctor can be a huge help. An exercise test will show what types of activities your body can handle. Keep in mind that when you’re sick you won’t be able to do some activities, remember this when getting involved with organized activities like team sports.
Far-Reaching Benefits of Exercise
If you have Cystic Fibrosis and you’re considering the question of whether or not exercise can help the answer is: absolutely. The benefits are incredible and far-reaching. According to medical studies on the matter exercise has even helped CF patients at the cellular level by promoting improvements in ion balances through activity in the sweat glands and airways. Through daily treatment and consistent exercise staying healthy can be a real goal.
An active lifestyle is a healthy lifestyle and it can be yours. Talk to your doctor; find something that works for you, set your goals and work towards them.
Helpful exercising tools & equipment
Helpful Exercising Tools
Come up with a program and stick with it. Its important to feel encouraged and see the progress that you’re making. If you keep track of your workouts over an extended period of time with a certain goal in mind and reach that goal you will continue to be motivated. Keeping track of your body is also important, track your lung function levels and compare your results to earlier results to get an idea of what exercises are benefiting you the most. There are some very helpful apps and tools online that can help you build a plan and keep track of your progress. Keeping track of your exercise is a great tool that will encourage you to keep going.
Treadmills, stationary bikes and other indoor workout equipment are an excellent way for people with Cystic Fibrosis to get the exercise they need at any time of day or year. With equipment like a treadmill or stationary bike, exercise doesn’t depend upon weather conditions or the time of day. There are also many fitness tracking watches and fitness apps that can help keep you on track and can be used to monitor heart rate, calories burned, distances and activity vs inactivity.
Stay Connected and Motivated
A great way to stay motivated and connected within the Cystic Fibrosis community is connecting on Strava, Facebook and other social media sites in which there are large CF communities. Strava is a fitness sports-focused social network site where one can track their bike rides, runs, swims and hikes. The IV Solutions Facebook page also provides an easy way to stay connected with the CF community and friends who will help keep you motivated in your journey.
Don’t be afraid to use all the tools available to you and make the most of your time and efforts. Set your goals high and you won’t be disappointed.
Exercise is Medicine in Cystic Fibrosis. Accessed April 27, 2015
Exercise Management Tips. Accessed April 27, 2015
Day-to-Day Exercise and Cystic Fibrosis. Accessed April 27, 2015.
Best Fitness Apps for 2015. Accessed April 28, 2015.
Strava. Accessed April 28, 2015
IV Solutions Facebook Page. Accessed April 28, 2015.