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Exercising with health issues (Help Please!)

Hello, I'm 17, 5'7" and 163lbs. I have some health issues that cause extreme fatigue, chronic pain (mostly tension and nerve) and difficulty standing up for long because of muscle weakness, low blood pressure and tachycardia (I can usually stand for about 10-15 minutes before collapsing).

I've been trying to find exercised that don't require me to stand just yet and due to some financial trouble I can't make it to the gym at the moment.

So does anyone have any exercises that can be done sitting down or prompted up against something like a chair or wall? I'm trying to regain back some muscle strength, improve my heart health and if I lose a couple pounds then that's just an added bonus, haha.

Also to anyone that maybe be concerned about the health aspect of it- I keep in touch with my doctors and always let them know if I plan on starting a diet, exercise, otc med, etc. and plan to do the same with any advice given to me here as well as you my best judgement based on how I feel and on any signs of change good or bad.

    • jdm_taco has a Gold Membership
      Gold Member

      Mar 22 at 02:45 AM


      It may be best to only follow the advise of you physician. Have you asked them for specific suggestions?

    • Hi.

      Have your doctor refer you to a physical therapist who specializes in this kind of thing. they can help you develop a great program.

    • Hi jdm_taco

      Yes, I did ask what they specifically suggest and they said gave me a pdf of a generalized workout plan which basically only tells me what my heart rate should be, and that I should start sitting down, lying down or in a pool.

      When asked what I could do laying or sitting down I was told a recumbent bike but that as well as a pool currently isn't available to me.

    • Hi johnsonkg,

      I'm currently trying to get into physical therapy however I'm having some issues with locations and what they provide. The hospital closest to me is only willing to really focus on my issues with muscle weakness and chronic pain and seem to avoid the topic of my autonomical issues (the low blood pressure, tachycardia). They know it's there and let me sit (I've had them once before) but don't exactly help me improve or focus on it. However the closest hospital that is willing to help me with it is an hour away and a pediatric hospital (they want to transition me away from pediatrics)

      Any possible advice on that then? I mostly just trying to find something to do in the mean time but if you have advice about how I can push the physical therapy to help with my autonomic issues then that would be awesome.

      Maybe I just need more a of a bacm bone to talk back to my doctors in situations like this, haha.

    • I definitely agree with the advice above about checking with your doctor and Physical therapist.

      That said, I wanted to share this seated/chair workout for you to check out and perhaps share with them to see if it's something right for you.

    • Hello jag2010

      Thank you.

      As I said to johnsonkg I'm trying to get a physical therapist and just looking for something I can possible do in the mean time until I find the perfect one.

      I didn't watch the full work out but I did watch a good chunk of it and think it would do well for me. I'll run it through my doctor and see what they think on it. Thanks again!

    • How about yoga or pilates?

    • Good luck to you!

    • Maybe look into getting resistance bands and looking up workouts?

    • I've thought of yoga before but also saw that a lot of it has the head below the heart for periods of time and with getting dizzy easily I don't know if that's the best idea. I also heard that pilates is kind of intense and I'm trying to start off slow and easy. Am I possibly misinformed? If so is there videos, websites or books I can look at?

      Thank you for the good luck!

      I had resistance bands at some point in time and an exercise plan with them although they maybe a bit tougher to do now sense I was really active and healthy at that point. I might still have them. I'll try and dig them up and see if there are exercises I can do with them sitting down. You know of any videos, websites or books that may have some exercises like that?

    • Hi,
      I work as an occupational therapy assistant. It would be helpful to know what your condition is for best intervetions. But, in general, u can do chair push-ups, lifting your body with arms and legs using the arms of the chair. It's similar to tricep dips but u don't exert yourself so much. U can do squats holding on to a counter or chair for stability, same with lunges. Do NOT over fatigue yourself. Take lots of rest breaks. U can use dumbells for your arms. If u don't have these u can use 16 oz or larger water bottles for lightweights. U can sit in a chair and lift your legs up to your chest as if doing a seated crunch. Leg marches sitting, kicks, side marches u can do all these sitting. Lying down u can do leg lifts on your back and side. Side laying brings your top knee towards your chest and extend. Take lots of breaks don't do them all at once. If your condition causes fatigue u do not want to increase that. U can do pushups and wall squats. It is more important for u not to overdo it and further fatigue yourself at this point, so monitor your activity with that breaks.
      U can get exercise bands that are stretch from Walmart for not much, or Amazon under $15 also. Hope some of this was helpful.

    • For sure have a backbone with your dr. Don't let them walk out of the room until you've said everything you wanted, and have gotten an actual answer to your questions.

    • Thank you all. I really appreciate this community so much. I'll have to try some of those exercises/modifications and see how it goes. I expect myself to feel more fatigue with exercising but I'll be sure to listen to my body and stop when needed. I'll also make sure to run it through my doctor before commiting to it.

      As for a back bone I'm doing my best to build up my voice and confidence. I know I'm not where I need to be but I'm doing my best to improve and move forward. I'm working on getting a therapist. One that specifically helps with cognitive behavior therapy? I don't know if this is standard as I'm no professional but my doctor stressed that they need to work with it.

      I'm hoping to improve myself physically and mentally as to not see my potential and future slip away from me before I can even get there. So that you all for the concern, advice and overall support. heart