Fatigue is probably the number one problem most of us deal with on a daily basis. The
causes are not always easy to define, and even when identified may not be easily remedied. When you’re tired the last thing you may want to do is exercise. But doing just that might be exactly what you need. Now, we aren’t taking about running laps or pumping iron, or cycling the sea wall. We’re talking about manageable physical exertion to increase blood flow and oxygen consumption.
What these exercises might look like…Walking from your front door to the curb, twice a day, Walking one flight of stairs and then taking the elevator…Parking at the far end of the parking lot or the opposite end of the shopping mall to the store you want to go to.
Little things, everyday, a little at a time… And now, here’s why you want to do it:
1. Exercise will pump oxygen into your blood and brain. Your circulatory system and organs will benefit from this ‘new’ blood.
2. Exercise can help keep adrenal hormones in balance. Stress may become more manage- able if your hormones are not swinging around wildly.
3. Exercise can help normalize blood sugar levels, so your body has a steady supply of en- ergy from which to draw. Fatigue and listlessness can result from too frequent drops in blood sugar.
4. Exercise can help with emotional stress. A workout can provide a healthy outlet for vent- ing frustrations and distraction from the issues you are facing and as your physical condition improves so may your self-confidence.
5. Exercise releases the body’s natural painkillers, those feel good drugs we call Endorphins. Endorphins naturally create feelings of well-being and happiness, a big pick me up for a fatigued body and mind.
6. A lack of exercise is a common cause of fatigue. Too little oxygen or shallow breathing zaps the body.
7. Fatigue of this kind is not an illness; it is merely a symptom of an underlying imbalance in the body and high levels of stress are often a contributing factor.
8. Though we often resist change, even if it is good for us, lifestyle changes are helpful.
9. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables daily if you can. Drink plenty of water. Avoid too much caffeine or alcohol.
10. Check that your fatigue isn’t a result of boredom or underlying depression.
11. If fatigue continues, have your thyroid checked, allergies and other disease that might have fatigue as a chronic symptom.
And finally, Don’t work all the time, take some time off for you! If you can’t take a holiday away from your life, take yourself away from your life for an hour or an afternoon. Go to the beach, look at the ocean, walk in a park and marvel at green. Stop and listen for bird songs. Go to a movie. There are a myriad of mini-holidays out there for you to enjoy. Or close the door, hang out the “Do not disturb” sign and read a book or indulge in a favorite tabloid magazine! Make a conscious effort to slow down and enjoy ‘something’. You may be surprised that that something becomes your life. In reality, you may not be entirely capable to choose how you feel physically, but you are more than able to choose what you are going to do about it.
As with all types of new physical activity, it is best to check with your doctor before beginning a new program. In the case of these exercises, it might also be wise to also check with your spouse, friends and family.
“Exercises” even a Myasthenic can do!
Balancing the books or putting your foot in your mouth, beating around the bush, bending over backwards (bending period!), climbing the walls or the corporate ladder, dragging your heels, hitting the nail on the head, jumping to conclu- sions or on the band wagon, making mountains out of molehills, passing the buck, pulling out all the stops or pulling an all-nighter, pushing your luck, running around in circles or running ragged, swallowing your pride and tooting your own horn (these take practice!), throwing your weight around, and finally, wading through paperwork.