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Exercise Intolerance


MamaTrain

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Hi! I have been noticing that when I do some forms of exercise I get very fatigued afterwards. I went swimming with my youngest last week, had a blast but felt like I had been run over by a truck the next day! Took me a day and a half of just "taking it easy" to feel like I was back to even my messed up normal! What is this and why does it happen in dysautonomia? I dont get that bad when I just walk so is it that I'm using a large group of muscle in other forms of exercise? Thanks for any information! Have a great week!

KC

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I haven't been swimming since I've been diagnosed with POTS I don't think. It's only a matter of time before I attempt the pool though and I think I'll be careful not to over do it on the 1st try when I do. My kids LOVE to swim!!! I've been walking and biking on the recumbant bike and so far that's been going OK! Sorry I don't have an answer but thanks for posting this ... it may help me in the future!!

Brye

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I swam during the summer when my symptoms were worse than they are currently. While I was swimming I felt pretty good (although much slower than usual) but when I tried to get out of the pool, I found I had to sit on the edge of the pool for about 20 minutes just to get enough energy to walk to the table, where I'd have to sit for about 30 minutes before I could crawl back to the house. :( Then I'd be wiped for a day or so afterwards. I would have the same reaction when I'd try to walk though too.

While you'd be using some different muscle groups (swimming vs. walking) both would be using larger muscle groups. My thoughts would be that:

1) Maybe you had so much fun with your kids in the pool that you didn't realize how active you were and that was what wiped you out? I think with the bouyancy of the water it might be easy to not realize how much you're asking of your body at the time- until you get back to normal gravitational forces again. or 2) maybe the heat and humidity in the pool area had an effect on you? or 3) Maybe it was just "one of those days" where your body wasn't up to what you asked of it and it wanted to let you know just how pleased it was with you for that! :) or 4) it might just be the whole cross-training thing. While your body has gotten used to the muscle and cardio-pulmonary demands involved with walking, when you change to another activity the training level you have acheived with walking doesn't necessarily transfer readily to swimming. Thus even a small amount of the new activity could be more taxing to your system than something you've been doing regularly.

Just some rambling thoughts but it was fun to feel a few of the cobwebs falling off my brain while I tried to puzzle it out! :wub:

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Exercise intolerance is a common symptom in people with POTS/dysautonomia. If I overdo my exercise, I feel horrible the next day, too, and I think there's a majority on the forum who have the same problem. I don't know the exact reason why it occurs, but I read it over and over when I'm reading up on POTS material. I think our Home Page has something on it, and if you type 'exercise intolerance' into Yahoo/Google/etc, along with POTS, you're likely to get a lot of info.

I used to work out a lot, and it's been one of my hardest adjustments to make...exercising at a low level of exertion. That and not being able to work!

Take care,

Jana

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Hi..

last years i have tryed diffrent forms for exercise and no luck. But the one form i do toltrate is in a heated pool.. I dont swim much yet. But i find it esyer to stand and move in the water than on land.

Its hard to gett out, really feel the gravity. I use wheelchair on land so.

for me the water helps.. :)

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Thanks for all your responses! Unfortunately when I went on my walk the other day the same thing happened! I find it odd cause I walked a bunch a few weeks back and didn't have this. On a different note but related to this, a friend of mine has a daughter who has been going thru the same thing as me. We find it odd that we both have this going on and I am 39 and she is 16. She saw a doctor recently who actually listened to them (can you imagine their delight) and she was like the first thing that should be tested is your adrenal glands! No one has tested my adrenals. I may look into it! Thanks again!

KC

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I hear you! I've given up on drying my hair and just let it dry naturally. At least it helps prevent split ends :) Seriously, though, even washing my hair with my arms above me hair tires me out. Some weeks I just go to my stylist and have it washed/dryed. It really saves me energy, and it's worth the $25.

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Guest tearose

I explain it like this:

Normal people do exercise and over a few days start "building" muscle and get stronger. People with dysautonomia do exercise and over a few days have "spent" all the energy in their muscles and get weaker. We must stop and rest and recharge to build up more energy to then do more activity. We do not store or build long term strength in our muscles.

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One more thought as to "why" swimming might make you more tired than walking.... If I remember correctly I think you get a bit "dehydrated" in the water (the "prune" effect which is usually most noticeable in your fingers and toes.) Since we seem to be sensitive to any kind of dehydration, I'd be curious as to whether or not that would account for being more tired.

However, since you found that you're now equally tired with walking, maybe it was just a coincidental occurence and was just part of the whole cycle of this dysautonomia.

Hope you notice some improvements with your exercising in the near future! Glad you're able to do some exercise at least.

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One more thought as to "why" swimming might make you more tired than walking.... If I remember correctly I think you get a bit "dehydrated" in the water (the "prune" effect which is usually most noticeable in your fingers and toes.) Since we seem to be sensitive to any kind of dehydration, I'd be curious as to whether or not that would account for being more tired.

However, since you found that you're now equally tired with walking, maybe it was just a coincidental occurence and was just part of the whole cycle of this dysautonomia.

Hope you notice some improvements with your exercising in the near future! Glad you're able to do some exercise at least.

You know I've decided that with this condition you just really never know! I have spent a little time researching adrenal problems and I am shocked at how many of my symptoms match! I did not know the adrenals play a part in electrolyte balance or they affect blood sugar regulation! I think I am going to ask my nutritionist or naturpathic doc about this. I want to be tested properly and see if they are messed up! I can only hope this is part of the problem! Thanks for your response. They mean alot to us dysfunctional folks!

KC

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I explain it like this:

Normal people do exercise and over a few days start "building" muscle and get stronger. People with dysautonomia do exercise and over a few days have "spent" all the energy in their muscles and get weaker. We must stop and rest and recharge to build up more energy to then do more activity. We do not store or build long term strength in our muscles.

TeaRose: that is exactly what happens...I can do for a little w hile then I get weak....really weak...can't even lift a fork weak...but if i rest I can get it back...but my cup gets real empt real fast!

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I did not know the adrenals play a part in electrolyte balance or they affect blood sugar regulation! I think I am going to ask my nutritionist or naturpathic doc about this. I want to be tested properly and see if they are messed up! I can only hope this is part of the problem! Thanks for your response. They mean alot to us dysfunctional folks!

KC

There's an interesting book about adrenal fatigue. Wish I could remember the exact name and the author but I think it has the words Adrenal Fatigue as part of the title. It talked a lot about just how important the adrenal glands are and the author contends that adrenal fatigue is rampant in Western lifestyles. If my brain worked like it used to, I might remember more about what it said but I read it about 7 years ago (I think). :ph34r:

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My doctor won't let me walk or do anything other that build up the strength in my legs and arms. I asked him if I should mall walk and he emphatically said no. I have a tendency to collapse from getting so weak and/or pass out from any aerobic exercise or activity such as shopping.

I am very deconditioned and not ready to walk or swim or do any other sustained exercise. It is going to take quite a long time to get the strength back.

Right now I am doing leg lifts, slowly increasing the repeats. I will add leg weights in a couple more weeks. I am doing other exercises for my arms and also some gentle stretching. Breaking my exercise up into smaller chunks helps prevent muscle fatigue--to a point. I also try to alternate arm and leg exercises the way weight lifters do. Doc K wants me to do Pilates and Balance Ball exercises--found quite a few routines on youtube and have a ball, so won't have to spend a lot of money.

I can't look back on what I used to be able to do. It is frustrating and depressing to be reminded of how much I have lost. I am trying very hard to exercise everyday, even if it is just a little and move forward with the way life is for me now.

Some days I move forward pretty well. Other days--well you all know.

Becky

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