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Getting Outdoors

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So before I had my major POTS symptoms I used to love being outdoors; long distance running, hiking, going to bigger dog parks, and walking around. Since having POTS my life has been made much smaller and I really can't do many of the things I used to. The best I've been able to do lately is go to a smaller dog park (fenced in square block) and take my dog there for an hour a few days a week. Luckily they have benches too in case just the walking around there is a little much. But I still yearn for the days I used to be able to go to forest preserves and hike for hours.

I'm wondering what other people are doing to get outdoors more? Part of me would love to go camping, I'm trying to see if there's a place around me where you can park close to your camp site.

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I find biking is great! I tend to have a much slower increase (and less substantial) in heart rate when I bike for extended periods of time, especially on flat ground. My family often goes to Kiawah Island in SC and it's a great way to get cardiovascular exercise without the incline or stress of hiking/running. However, when possible, I do go running when I feel like it because I find that it helps with other activity. My biggest issue is any kind of incline (stairs, steep trails, etc.; my hr goes from like 80-90 bpm to over 150 in less than a minute or so, generally. I don't have that issue when I bike.) Kayaking is great too!! Sitting down and just using your arms/building core and cardiovascular strength (which they suggest for POTS) is perfect.

I've also ridden horses my entire life, and I'm not sure if that's an option for you, but I would HIGHLY suggest taking basic riding lessons if you can. It's calming and helps keep you centered while also allowing you to get exercise that is only at the intensity you want it to be.

Hope that helps!

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I still take the dog to the local state parks but I know generally how long I can last and walk half that time in and know to turn around and get back out before there's a problem. And, I only do the flat-ish trails...no hills anymore. I also utilize my local neighborhood parks more because they have benches.

I also have a horse and while my riding is limited due to a few medical issues, I find spending time grooming her to be very mentally therapeutic. Sometimes I have to sit on a stool to clean her hooves and legs but that's ok....I still get it done. A local therapeutic riding program might be an option for you to look into even if you just want to learn to groom the horses but not ride. If your interested in that let me know and I might be able to find a program in your area.

I also have taken up gardening which is a trip because I used to kill any house plant I touched. But, now, I have the time on my hands to tinker a little at a time with it. And, I can sit to do most of it. It is rewarding to see something beautiful grow out of your efforts. Plus, I grow herbs in the summer to cook with fresh and also to harvest and dry for the winter cooking.

I do short walks with the dog in my neighborhood when I'm not feeling well but want to get some fresh air and exercise. And I do mean short...maybe only 10 minutes sometimes. I often stay within sight of my front door so I know I can make it back if I need to. Plus I know enough of my neighbors that if I had to sit on someone's front steps, it would be ok.

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I try to go for atleast one walk per day, well if Mother Nature allows me too (I live in Wisconsin). Just to be out walking in the fresh air feels amazing, even if it is only 10 minutes or so.

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