You CAN Still Be Active with Emphysema

“I have emphysema.” These words should be said as a fact, not as a reason to stop physical exercising. However, for countless people suffering emphysema symptoms, the thought of exercise seems implausible and perhaps even scary. But regular physical fitness is essential as part of an emphysema treatment.

The case for activity is grounded in physics: a body in motion tends to stay in motion. So, if you exercise on a regular basis, your muscles, arteries, and lungs won’t have the opportunity to atrophy or stiffen from infrequent usage. And keeping your body in tip-top shape is necessary for emphysema treatment.

“That’s all well and good,” you might say. “But I could never run a marathon!” And that may be true; certainly, no one is expecting any emphysema sufferer to undertake physical activities that could potentially lead to harm or difficulty. Yet there are plenty of exercises that even those with moderate emphysema symptoms can attempt.

Take walking, for instance. If you have emphysema and are looking for a supplement to your emphysema treatments such as medications and vitamins, merely taking a stroll down the street once a day is an excellent means for you to keep your lungs and body in shape. Though you’ll probably have to start small, that’s perfectly acceptable. Even if you can only make it to the mailbox and back to begin, you’re doing something for your emphysema symptoms and you overall general well-being.

Another great exercise is gardening (provided that the pollen count isn’t too high and doesn’t exacerbate emphysema symptoms). Even though you aren’t lifting weights or jogging on a treadmill, you’re still exerting energy and forcing your muscles to stretch and contract. You’re also getting fresh air, something many emphysema sufferers do not get enough of, unfortunately. As an emphysema treatment, gardening can also help from a mental point of view, as it tends to be a pleasurable, relaxing activity.

Yoga and other forms of meditative exercise are fabulous emphysema treatments. They help you learn to control your body and breathing, encouraging you to work with (rather than against) what you can do. Thus, rather than dwelling on your limits, you’ll be able to start seeing yourself as a unique, strong individual capable of movement and inner peace.

Weight lifting may also help some with their emphysema symptoms, but only when done in moderation. Even though this is an anaerobic activity, it puts a great deal of strain on the heart (and sometimes even the lungs, as many novice weight lifters tend to hold their breaths when doing reps). If you’re going to lift weights as part of your emphysema treatment, go easy on yourself and make sure you start with low dumbbells.

Will physical exercise be simple at first? Not entirely. You’ll definitely be taxing your body, especially if you’re not someone who has been active recently. But it will be one of the best things you can do for yourself – body, mind, and spirit.

Keep yourself active as a treatment of emphysema symptoms and you’ll reap incredible benefits.