Some people are aware of my medical history and journey, but for those who aren't aware - I am diagnosed with endometriosis, chronic utis (one kidney), PCOS and now currently on the high priority list for surgery for possibly irritable bowel disease (crohn's disease).
So when it comes to training and having chronic pain it can be really difficult not only physically but mentally.
And I know I’m not the only one as in Australia alone, 1 in 5 individuals are affected by chronic pain to the point that pain significantly impacts on their daily life.
Personally, sometimes my pain when is at its highest… I have to use a wheelchair to get around, but since I find this embarrassing I usually stay in bed, but when I am like this - I really don't cope mentally because I know I can't train and I know im gonna eat off track because of my mood and it really sucks.
But since everyone has days they feel off - know it is okay to take the day off, recover and really focus on how you're feeling physically and mentally.
- Choose an exercise you enjoy: choose an exercise you feel comfortable with and does not impact your pain levels too much. For me, I avoid doing cardio and AB exercises as much as possible like walking or sit ups because it causes pain flare ups so this is why I like doing resistance training because I tend to have less pain and generally enjoying lifting heavy.
- Avoid pain flaring exercises: this is a big must for me which I kinda mentioned above but again, for me, I have to avoid any ab/core exercises and types of cardio because it causes a pain flare which is something you don't want.
- Start slowly and be consistent: something my pain Dr and pain Physio suggested was only doing as much as you can because if you push yourself, you'll most likely regress due to pain and fear of causing pain. This is why I generally break things up such as doing multiple walks throughout the day versus doing one big one.
Remember that your pain is going to be different from mine so it is important to have the knowledge about your condition, physical activity and pain. There is no one optimal type of exercise for chronic pain.