Trying to Test My Limits and How it’s Affected Me
Last updated: April 2023
If you know me or follow me on Instagram, you know that I regularly use a rollator walker to get around. I use it mostly for my fatigue levels, but on bad pain days, it helps as well.
I also have a cane for days that aren’t as bad, but I still need support. Both of these mobility aids are pink and I love them!
My relationship with exercise
Before I got sick, I would work out every day. Once I got sick, I found yoga, and that was my new escape. At a certain point, even that got to be too much. My fatigue was increasing and it was becoming harder and harder to get myself to move.
It was hard for me to accept that I couldn’t work out the same ways as I used to. The exercise was my escape for years, and to lose that was really difficult.
What I’ve been doing lately
For the past month or so I’ve been testing my limits. I started physiotherapy 3 weeks ago and was thrown back into the world of exercise. I haven’t regularly exercised in a few years due to my increasing levels of fatigue. I know that movement is medicine, but it’s just been so hard to get myself up and moving most days.
Since starting physiotherapy I’ve been much more open to exercise. I was initially given 3 home exercises to do every day. These made me feel accomplished when I did them and made me feel like I was making progress, finally. Last week that increased to 7 daily exercises, which were more difficult, but I like a challenge.
I’ve also been trying to use my mobility aids less just to see how my body reacts. Something about exercising more makes me want to push my limits as far as they can go. That’s just how I’ve always been with exercise. I like to feel the burn. No pain, no gain, as they say.
How it’s been affecting me
The first week of physiotherapy was great! I was feeling accomplished and energized to exercise. The second week was a lot harder. I was fatigued and in pain, and exercising was so difficult to do.
I continued to push myself, but not as hard as I intended. I know that burnout is a real possibility here, so I am learning to rest when I need to, and not push my body too far.
As all of this is happening, I’m also using my aids less, as I mentioned. This has been difficult. I can go shorter distances without using my walker, but it’s really hard on my body. My fatigue, later on, is worse, and I take about 2 naps a day right now.
I’ve been using my cane more when I do need help, but it’s just not the same as my walker. I just don’t want to rely on them too much. But I know that if I need them, I need them, and I need to listen to my body.
How I’m feeling right now
Right now, on week 3 of being back in physiotherapy, I’m feeling okay. I’m motivated to do my exercises and push myself, but I’m learning my limits and working within them. I think that’s really important with new exercises, as burnout is a possibility. Rest is important.
Have you ever had to take a leave of absence from work due to your symptoms?
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