One of the most useful places you can focus your brain power and energy is exercise. Unfortunately, pain teaches many people to rest and reduce their activities. It seems only natural to do so. But excessive rest (not using your muscles), is not good for anyone. The way to combat loss of endurance is through mild exercise. (*IMPORTANT: of course, you must talk to your physician before any exercise plan to ensure it meets your specific needs*). For all other reasons, a mild exercise program is a significant strategy and very effective weapon in coping with chronic pain. Plus, it's just plan good for you!
Exercise seems to stimulate the body’s natural defense against pain through endorphins, natural pain-relieving substance. Endorphins slow pain signals to the brain and can also help with mood problems.
To get started and stay motivated, build your exercise program around activities that you enjoy. Swimming, biking and walking are often good choices. Exercises that may help you relax such as meditation and yoga, may be helpful too.
Remember to start slowly and gradually increase over time. Don’t rush into a strenuous workout before your body is ready. Pace yourself and be consistent. The intensity of the workout is less important than the fact that you do it regularly.
Exercising with a buddy can also be helpful as a motivator and as a distraction. Find a friend who wants to get in better shape and work out together, encouraging each other to making exercise more fun.👭
As your energy increases and your mood improves, exercise may truly become enjoyable!