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Excercise with COPD


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I am suffering with COPD and I can't walk more than 2 minutes without having to stop to catch my breath.

I don't know what to do to take the weight off. I am keeping my calories where they should be and I haven't gained but I am not losing either.

Anyone have any insight? Thanks!

 

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I am an ex smoker 6 years clean but have COPD and this summer suffered a severe exacerbation due to the dust storms in Phoenix that settled up here in my little town.  The air was thick with dust and I had to go onto several inhalers, got a home nebulizer machine for treatments and even a drug.  Luckily after a few months of the wheezing and not being able to work out like I was used to it has cleared and now I just do one inhaler ( Advair) and have my rescue inhaler that I use occasionally before working out.

Are you on any treatment?  do you have to use O2?  do you have rescue inhalers.  do you take Spiriva or other med to keep attacks at bay?

When I first started getting healthy I was still a smoker and being overweight I could also barely walk around the block, but I pushed through it.

If you have a nebulizer I'd say do a breathing treatment before you are going to work out and see if that helps.  Talk to your doctor about med options.  I took for a couple weeks a new pill called daliresp that is suppose to help with exacerbations.  I also always make sure I keep my rescue inhaler in my workout bag.

Try weight lifting.  I did get short of breath sometimes but it doesn't seem to be as bad as when I do intense workouts.  

How about some muscle work?

You don't have to do cardio to lose weight contrary to popular belief. Do what you can.

Think of it this way: Weightloss is 80% diet and 20% exercise.

Try some strength exercises heavy weights. The bigger your muscles the less room there is for fat.

If your unfamiliar with weight training I recommend reading "New Rules of Lifting for Women" and "Primal Blueprint" or "Paleo Diet". These really helped a newbie like me with my diet and exercise goals.

These are the three books that have been life changers for me. I'm just getting started with my new lifestyle and have already seen great weightloss results with minimal cardio.

Have you had any physical therapy?  They can help you find exercises you can do.  I also would recomend the upper body ergometer if your local senior center or any local gym has one.  It's a great twofer, it will work your upper body with both cardio and building up some muscle and you can sit down which helps.  And I apologize I don't know how old you are.  Many senior centers will take anyone 50 or over, or let use equipment if they have specialized equipment if you need it. 

Thanks but pushing, pulling etc. leave me breathless. I don't run a vacuum anymore nor do i get groceries by myself. It is exhausting.

I clean the bathroom floor and I am done for the day! Bathroom being a small 6' x 8'

Original Post by dbackerfan:

I am an ex smoker 6 years clean but have COPD and this summer suffered a severe exacerbation due to the dust storms in Phoenix that settled up here in my little town.  The air was thick with dust and I had to go onto several inhalers, got a home nebulizer machine for treatments and even a drug.  Luckily after a few months of the wheezing and not being able to work out like I was used to it has cleared and now I just do one inhaler ( Advair) and have my rescue inhaler that I use occasionally before working out.

Are you on any treatment?  do you have to use O2?  do you have rescue inhalers.  do you take Spiriva or other med to keep attacks at bay?

When I first started getting healthy I was still a smoker and being overweight I could also barely walk around the block, but I pushed through it.

If you have a nebulizer I'd say do a breathing treatment before you are going to work out and see if that helps.  Talk to your doctor about med options.  I took for a couple weeks a new pill called daliresp that is suppose to help with exacerbations.  I also always make sure I keep my rescue inhaler in my workout bag.

Try weight lifting.  I did get short of breath sometimes but it doesn't seem to be as bad as when I do intense workouts.  

I keep forgetting to hit quote and hit reply.

I can't walk from my bedroom to my living room without being breathless. I do use oxygen but only for sleep. At rest my levels are ok but when I am doing dishes, cleaning etc. I get breathless.

I really do need to ask my Pulmonologist Dr about different meds. I am on spiriva and symbicort along with singulair and no rescue inhaler.

Weight lifting? I can't pick up a gallon of milk and put it on the counter without getting out of breath.

 

I hate to ask this question but do you think it is it time to start O2 24/7?  It might allow you to go shopping and do simpler tasks without having to sit down, just a little increase in activity would burn a few more calories.  Just so you know I run a senior center so I have seen many a person deal with having to increase O2.  Your body may be holding onto calories because your not getting enough oxygen.  I would say it's definitely time to talk to your therapist or doc.  Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Original Post by teagal225:

Original Post by dbackerfan:

I am an ex smoker 6 years clean but have COPD and this summer suffered a severe exacerbation due to the dust storms in Phoenix that settled up here in my little town.  The air was thick with dust and I had to go onto several inhalers, got a home nebulizer machine for treatments and even a drug.  Luckily after a few months of the wheezing and not being able to work out like I was used to it has cleared and now I just do one inhaler ( Advair) and have my rescue inhaler that I use occasionally before working out.

Are you on any treatment?  do you have to use O2?  do you have rescue inhalers.  do you take Spiriva or other med to keep attacks at bay?

When I first started getting healthy I was still a smoker and being overweight I could also barely walk around the block, but I pushed through it.

If you have a nebulizer I'd say do a breathing treatment before you are going to work out and see if that helps.  Talk to your doctor about med options.  I took for a couple weeks a new pill called daliresp that is suppose to help with exacerbations.  I also always make sure I keep my rescue inhaler in my workout bag.

Try weight lifting.  I did get short of breath sometimes but it doesn't seem to be as bad as when I do intense workouts.  

I keep forgetting to hit quote and hit reply.

I can't walk from my bedroom to my living room without being breathless. I do use oxygen but only for sleep. At rest my levels are ok but when I am doing dishes, cleaning etc. I get breathless.

I really do need to ask my Pulmonologist Dr about different meds. I am on spiriva and symbicort along with singulair and no rescue inhaler.

Weight lifting? I can't pick up a gallon of milk and put it on the counter without getting out of breath.

 

OK then looks like you're running out of exercise options. The best advice I can give is to do what you can the best you can.

Also remember for weightloss: 80% diet 20% exercise.

Original Post by margemcd:

I hate to ask this question but do you think it is it time to start O2 24/7?  It might allow you to go shopping and do simpler tasks without having to sit down, just a little increase in activity would burn a few more calories.  Just so you know I run a senior center so I have seen many a person deal with having to increase O2.  Your body may be holding onto calories because your not getting enough oxygen.  I would say it's definitely time to talk to your therapist or doc.  Good luck and let us know how it goes.

It's ok to ask but it has to be Dr ordered and he won't give it to me until I am in need of it at rest.  At least that is what I have been told by him before. I have been thinking about trying to use it during the day so I can possibly do a little exercise to get me started. You're talking to someone who has kept the weight off due to good eating habits and the ability to exercise. Walking 3 miles a day 5 days a week and doing aerobic exercises the other two.  All I can do is try. The weight doesn't move in either direction and it gets quite upsetting.

Thanks!

Original Post by redcrow9:

Original Post by teagal225:

Original Post by dbackerfan:

I am an ex smoker 6 years clean but have COPD and this summer suffered a severe exacerbation due to the dust storms in Phoenix that settled up here in my little town.  The air was thick with dust and I had to go onto several inhalers, got a home nebulizer machine for treatments and even a drug.  Luckily after a few months of the wheezing and not being able to work out like I was used to it has cleared and now I just do one inhaler ( Advair) and have my rescue inhaler that I use occasionally before working out.

Are you on any treatment?  do you have to use O2?  do you have rescue inhalers.  do you take Spiriva or other med to keep attacks at bay?

When I first started getting healthy I was still a smoker and being overweight I could also barely walk around the block, but I pushed through it.

If you have a nebulizer I'd say do a breathing treatment before you are going to work out and see if that helps.  Talk to your doctor about med options.  I took for a couple weeks a new pill called daliresp that is suppose to help with exacerbations.  I also always make sure I keep my rescue inhaler in my workout bag.

Try weight lifting.  I did get short of breath sometimes but it doesn't seem to be as bad as when I do intense workouts.  

I keep forgetting to hit quote and hit reply.

I can't walk from my bedroom to my living room without being breathless. I do use oxygen but only for sleep. At rest my levels are ok but when I am doing dishes, cleaning etc. I get breathless.

I really do need to ask my Pulmonologist Dr about different meds. I am on spiriva and symbicort along with singulair and no rescue inhaler.

Weight lifting? I can't pick up a gallon of milk and put it on the counter without getting out of breath.

 

OK then looks like you're running out of exercise options. The best advice I can give is to do what you can the best you can.

Also remember for weightloss: 80% diet 20% exercise.

Your 80/20 ratio isn't exactly correct. IF a person does no exercise but cuts his/her calorie intake down, they can and do lose weight. Most COPD patients look like skeletons when they die because of the inability to eat enough food. Also on a better note, my Mom who will be 86 this year just lost 10lbs and trust me, she doesn't exercise, she doesn't even clean her own house. She sits all day watching t.v.

teagal, I'm so sorry that you have COPD. I have no experience with it, but do you think you'd be able to do yoga? Not vinyasa or hot yoga, or anything. But there is hatha yoga, which I think (some yogini can correct me if I'm wrong) is one of the more gentle forms. It might be a way to start moving a little more than you do now.

And I also think talking to your doctor about getting oxygen for exercise would be worth it. He might say no, but then perhaps that can lead to a discussion of what you can do to help you get more active.

Again, I don't know really anything about COPD, but is it something that you can build up your endurance and lung capacity over time, as long as you start slowly? If so, then surely your doctor would want you to try to do that, right?

Original Post by teagal225:

Original Post by redcrow9:

Original Post by teagal225:

Original Post by dbackerfan:

I am an ex smoker 6 years clean but have COPD and this summer suffered a severe exacerbation due to the dust storms in Phoenix that settled up here in my little town.  The air was thick with dust and I had to go onto several inhalers, got a home nebulizer machine for treatments and even a drug.  Luckily after a few months of the wheezing and not being able to work out like I was used to it has cleared and now I just do one inhaler ( Advair) and have my rescue inhaler that I use occasionally before working out.

Are you on any treatment?  do you have to use O2?  do you have rescue inhalers.  do you take Spiriva or other med to keep attacks at bay?

When I first started getting healthy I was still a smoker and being overweight I could also barely walk around the block, but I pushed through it.

If you have a nebulizer I'd say do a breathing treatment before you are going to work out and see if that helps.  Talk to your doctor about med options.  I took for a couple weeks a new pill called daliresp that is suppose to help with exacerbations.  I also always make sure I keep my rescue inhaler in my workout bag.

Try weight lifting.  I did get short of breath sometimes but it doesn't seem to be as bad as when I do intense workouts.  

I keep forgetting to hit quote and hit reply.

I can't walk from my bedroom to my living room without being breathless. I do use oxygen but only for sleep. At rest my levels are ok but when I am doing dishes, cleaning etc. I get breathless.

I really do need to ask my Pulmonologist Dr about different meds. I am on spiriva and symbicort along with singulair and no rescue inhaler.

Weight lifting? I can't pick up a gallon of milk and put it on the counter without getting out of breath.

 

OK then looks like you're running out of exercise options. The best advice I can give is to do what you can the best you can.

Also remember for weightloss: 80% diet 20% exercise.

Your 80/20 ratio isn't exactly correct. IF a person does no exercise but cuts his/her calorie intake down, they can and do lose weight. Most COPD patients look like skeletons when they die because of the inability to eat enough food. Also on a better note, my Mom who will be 86 this year just lost 10lbs and trust me, she doesn't exercise, she doesn't even clean her own house. She sits all day watching t.v.

Yes. That was the point I was trying to make. You don't have to exercise to lose weight.

Exercise is only 20% of the weightloss formula. I lost 25lbs with no exercise. Do you understand what I mean now?

 

I think a visit to the pulmonologist is needed.  I mean if you are that short of breath just walking and are limited in funtioning day to day then something needs to be changed. 

I can't imagine why you don't have a rescue inhaler at least.  What is your o2 levels when you visit the doc?  I would also discuss a nebulizer so you can do breathing treatments and maybe improve your day to day activites. 

I had an uncle who died from emphysema and his calorie intake was thru the roof because just breathing was a workout and he still lost weight being bedridden.

I guess until the COPD gets better controlled looks like calorie reduction is what you have to do.  Who knows maybe after a few pounds loss your breathing will improve and then exercise might be an option

Original Post by amethystgirl:

teagal, I'm so sorry that you have COPD. I have no experience with it, but do you think you'd be able to do yoga? Not vinyasa or hot yoga, or anything. But there is hatha yoga, which I think (some yogini can correct me if I'm wrong) is one of the more gentle forms. It might be a way to start moving a little more than you do now.

And I also think talking to your doctor about getting oxygen for exercise would be worth it. He might say no, but then perhaps that can lead to a discussion of what you can do to help you get more active.

Again, I don't know really anything about COPD, but is it something that you can build up your endurance and lung capacity over time, as long as you start slowly? If so, then surely your doctor would want you to try to do that, right?

COPD has no cure and slowly robs the air we breathe from us. I have oxygen at home so using it during exercise wouldn't need a Dr. ok. (Dr's can be soooo difficult). Because of my insurance I have to stay with the Dr I am seeing now. I hope to change that next year, maybe with a Dr. who is willing to help more?

I have had this disease for 21 years.

Original Post by dbackerfan:

I think a visit to the pulmonologist is needed.  I mean if you are that short of breath just walking and are limited in funtioning day to day then something needs to be changed. 

I can't imagine why you don't have a rescue inhaler at least.  What is your o2 levels when you visit the doc?  I would also discuss a nebulizer so you can do breathing treatments and maybe improve your day to day activites. 

I had an uncle who died from emphysema and his calorie intake was thru the roof because just breathing was a workout and he still lost weight being bedridden.

I guess until the COPD gets better controlled looks like calorie reduction is what you have to do.  Who knows maybe after a few pounds loss your breathing will improve and then exercise might be an option

My oxygen level while at Dr is 98 just like it is at home . . . . until I get up to do something. It drops quickly to 88 and I don't let it get lower. I stop what I am doing until I can go on.

I have a nebulizer. The Dr says use if needed. It doesn't do anything more than the inhalers do.

You know what my Dr has said about my limitations? He says "get use to it". There is no cure so he is doing all he can and I see him on a regular basis. I see him again next week.

While I was on steroids I gained a whopping 80 lbs and have lost it. I breathe the same with or without the weight. I just wanna wear a size 10!

Original Post by margemcd:

Have you had any physical therapy?  They can help you find exercises you can do.  I also would recomend the upper body ergometer if your local senior center or any local gym has one.  It's a great twofer, it will work your upper body with both cardio and building up some muscle and you can sit down which helps.  And I apologize I don't know how old you are.  Many senior centers will take anyone 50 or over, or let use equipment if they have specialized equipment if you need it. 

I plan to ask my Dr next week when I see him about doing some type of therapy. Thanks!

I am just sick and tired of being sick and tired. This came on so sudden. Sure I had a rough time but this hit like a brick wall where I can't work, walk far etc.

I went to the store today for a few things. I can handle a few things and I walked around the store for exercise. I did twice until I had to stop. If that is my limit, that is all I can do I guess.

I also have a chronic illness (not respitory, digestive), but mine comes and goes, but it does hit like a ton of bricks and I can be out of work for days or weeks.  So, I completely understand.  And I have exercise induced asthma (hopefully only weight related) and I can't imagine being where you are right now.  I really feel for you.  I hope your doc prescribes some physical therapy, because even if it's a small amount you'll just feel better.  If nothing else they can help you "figure out how to better do the tasks you need/want to do".  Tell him a Council on Aging Director suggested physical therapy if he balks.  I really do think the upper body ergometer is just the ticket for you (you can use those silly little bicycle pedals that you can throw on the floor as well and then use it on the floor and on the table.  Work out for 30-60 seconds slowly and then rest for 4-5 minutes and repeat (that's just my own timing not written in stone).  Even if it doesn't burn anything per se you'll just feel better for having done it.  It doesn't have to be really aerobic just moving your body a tiny bit.

Original Post by teagal225:

I can't walk from my bedroom to my living room without being breathless. I do use oxygen but only for sleep. At rest my levels are ok but when I am doing dishes, cleaning etc. I get breathless.

I really do need to ask my Pulmonologist Dr about different meds. I am on spiriva and symbicort along with singulair and no rescue inhaler.

Weight lifting? I can't pick up a gallon of milk and put it on the counter without getting out of breath.

 


After reading this, I think I will go out for a 10 mile run and be thankful that I can.

Original Post by teagal225:

I am suffering with COPD and I can't walk more than 2 minutes without having to stop to catch my breath.

I don't know what to do to take the weight off. I am keeping my calories where they should be and I haven't gained but I am not losing either.

Anyone have any insight? Thanks!

 

Thanks to everyone!! I got on line and searched (my Dr. doesn't suggest anything) and found a group that meets monthly for therapy along with better breathing techniques.  I pray this is what will be my answer . . . again, thank you all for your help!

Original Post by margemcd:

I also have a chronic illness (not respitory, digestive), but mine comes and goes, but it does hit like a ton of bricks and I can be out of work for days or weeks.  So, I completely understand.  And I have exercise induced asthma (hopefully only weight related) and I can't imagine being where you are right now.  I really feel for you.  I hope your doc prescribes some physical therapy, because even if it's a small amount you'll just feel better.  If nothing else they can help you "figure out how to better do the tasks you need/want to do".  Tell him a Council on Aging Director suggested physical therapy if he balks.  I really do think the upper body ergometer is just the ticket for you (you can use those silly little bicycle pedals that you can throw on the floor as well and then use it on the floor and on the table.  Work out for 30-60 seconds slowly and then rest for 4-5 minutes and repeat (that's just my own timing not written in stone).  Even if it doesn't burn anything per se you'll just feel better for having done it.  It doesn't have to be really aerobic just moving your body a tiny bit.

Thank you for your post! I do get out and I do little at a time only because that is how I have to but it is sooo frustrating.  I just want to ride a bike, walk through a park, be human again but that is not happening. I live in a 55 and over community and all my neighbors are bike riding or walking and I sit and watch. It totally bums me out. I would love to dance with my husband again!

Thanks again and I have signed up for a therapy class that meets once a month.

On top of all of this I also have a hiatal hernia, gerd and ulcerative colitis. I feel so darn lucky!! ha ha ha Laughing

OK, I'm curious.  What is the root cause of your COPD?

50 Replies (last)
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