The key to starting and maintaining an exercise routine when you have rheumatoid arthritis or RA is to start somewhere and go from there. Regular exercise could aid in increasing your joints’ function and improving overall body function.
If you fear exercising because of pain, you just need to modify your workout routine to avoid aggravating your pain. Start with the following steps:
Always do a warm up before exercising and a cool down after.
Your warm up and cool down could be as easy as five minutes of walking or jogging and some light stretching. This is crucial for pain-free exercising because a warm-up warms your muscles, while a cool down would aid in recovery and decreasing soreness after exercising.
Don’t perform the same exercises.
Never work the same joints and muscles for consecutive days since they could get aggravated and sore, and hinder recovery. Consider cross-training to prevent injuries, advises a licensed trainer from a top personal training studio in Massachusetts. Get In Shape For Women recommends doing walking and strength exercises on the first day, walking and yoga the next day, and swimming on the third day.
Avoid high impact exercises, such as running, because these increase your risk of aggravating your inflamed joints. Focus instead on walking, yoga, tai chi, pilates, or swimming.
Don’t forget flexibility and strength training exercises.
These are vital because the stronger your muscles are, the better they are at reducing strain on your joints.
Never push through your pain.
While it’s common for you to feel some discomfort and pain on your joints when starting out, these sensations should go away within several minutes. If you feel significant pain or pain that increases even after you’ve stopped, stop exercising and try again the next day.
Wear supportive but comfortable footwear.
When exercising, especially if you have rheumatoid arthritis, comfort is extremely important. Find footwear with ample cushion, arch support, and a wide toe box.
With regular exercise, you would be able to do your daily tasks more effectively with less pain because your body would be more flexible, functional, and stronger. Just listen to what your body’s telling you and opt for exercises that make you stronger and that you could do at least thrice a week. Then try to push yourself a little more every day.