Exercise is an aspect of modern living we’ve just got to do if we’re to stay healthy
I love being outdoors, whether it is swimming, walking along the beach, wandering in the woods or getting lost on countryside rambles. When it comes to exercise, running is my thing and with the unusually warm Irish summer, it has been all the more pleasurable. I’ve been able combine staying fit with getting a good dose of Vitamin D.
In early June I was talking with a friend from the European MS Platform (EMSP) about running and she mentioned the Brussels Marathon/Half-Marathon on the 6th October. It is one of those things I’ve wanted to do and so, in just 13 days, I’ll be zipping through the Belgian city with thousands of others. The EMSP Team will be raising awareness and funds for people with MS in Europe.I run an average of 4/5 miles at least five times a week with a long run at the weekend. This weekend I took the pedestrian track from Portmarnock to Malahide, a beautiful coastal stretch. It is about 8 miles round trip. At the start, my legs were a little resistant, but after 10 minutes or so I found my stride. There has been very warm weather recently, unusual for Autumn. When my body gets warm, my hands start to tingle and sometimes weaken but generally there are no disabling effects. This is due to the demylinated nerves not being protected and therefore more susceptible to the increase in temperature.
Research has shown that exercise is good for the body in that it reduces inflammation, reduces stress, increases flexibility and is great for improving your mental health. It can be difficult to manage our expectations when it comes to life with MS but the balance of habitual exercise and rest when I need it keeps me top of my game. Personally, exercise is one of my ways to reduce cognitive dissonance and curb the tendency for emotional high-jacking that comes when fatigue takes over.
Do what you can when you can and, if you stick to a routine, it will make all the difference to your quality of life, no matter where you’re ‘at’. Do let yourself be confident about what your body can do and enjoy what you have.
Taking Care of Your Mind and BODY