If you suffer from asthma like I do, you may have been told or advised that you can’t exercise safely. Contrary to what many think of this subject, there are ways that you can get in shape and exercise, even if you suffer from asthma.
For those with a new diagnosis, asthma is a chronic lung disease that is marked by characteristics such as coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness. If you have it, you already know that it can be scary when you can not catch your breath.
Asthma tends to occur with people who are genetically or environmentally presdisposed to the condition. If you have it, you may outgrow some of the effects of Asthma but you will still be susceptible to ongoing issues if you do not monitor your illness with care.
Some of the triggers that may start or make an attack worse include exposure to allergens, viral respiratory infections, airway irritants, exercise, and exposure to things such as dust mites or cockroaches.
You can lessen the effects of asthma attacks by doing the following:
1. Bath any pets in the house often, and yourself 😀
2. Don’t use indoor wood burning fireplaces, or permit smoking in your home. Get that CBD or THC from gummies instead.
3. When mold or pollent counts are high, you should stay inside with air conditioning. Remember to change those intake air filters often.
4. Wash your bedding and any additional fabric household items at least once per week in hot water. Dead skin can gather in any fabric like throw pillows and increase the particulat count in the air.
5. Wash hands often and use microfiber towels to dry and clean with. They have less dust offs then paper towel and cloth rags.
6. Get a flu shot each season to keep your immune system strong.
7. Wear a scarf over your mouth and nose in the winter months. Although I love cold air in my lungs, it can trigger an attack when you get a deep inhale at the onset of running.
8. Be proactive and know your triggers and how you should avoid them.
Now that you have some more understanding about asthma, you may be wondering where exercise fits in. Doctors and respiratory therapist will encourage that you shouldn’t give up on sports or exercise at all. You just have to be smart about how you exert energy and take special precautions to avoid attacks. Deep breathing exercise can actually limit and prevent future asthma attacks as you build up your stamina.
The best way to prevent and control attacks during exercise is to keep your inhaler and medication close by. You should never use the inhaler more than 3 times during a run. If you notice that a previous run caused coughing and wheezing, it’s always best to go light with your exercise the next day. Start with a preventative use of your inhaler and take it with you.
For EIA (Exercise Induced Asthma), the symptoms are somewhat different, in the fact that they appear after 6 – 10 minutes of exercise and will often be worse in cold or dry air.
Exercise-induced asthma, or E.I.A., occurs when the airways narrow as a result of exercise. The condition is also known as exercise-induced bronchoconstriction. The physical activity does not cause asthma, but is frequently an asthma trigger.
If you have chronic EIA, there are several activities that you can enjoy such as swimming, walking, biking, downhill skiing, and team based sports. There are many activities for you to choose from, to ensure you get the exercise you need as well as you start to rebuild your stamina running activities. Increasing the use of anti-inflammatory foods and supplements such as turmeric can assist with controlling asthma attacks.
Keep in mind that the condition of asthma isn’t “all in your head”, it is a real physiological medical condition that will require treatment to prevent future attacks. Even though your doctor will be the best partner in treating your asthma condition, you are the one who can prevent your symptoms.
Always be smart, take your medication, and be proactive. Don’t let it cause a sedentary life style – you can enjoy exercise just like everyone else.
Lace Them Up, Let’s Go!