When I was in middle school, I had an asthma attack in PE class while we were running the mile. I couldn't breathe. My chest was tight. I was wheezing. It was one of the scariest things that have ever happened to me as a kid. After that, I was afraid of running. I just never wanted to feel that way again. It took me years to understand how to manage my asthma with the help of my doctor. And now when I run, I'm stomping on my can'ts, won'ts, and didn't-think-I-coulds with every step. It's Fitness Friday and here's how I stay fit and active...even with asthma.
Consult your doctor.
I'm not a doctor by any stretch of the imagination. I know, shocker! When I was first thinking about doing a 5k, I had a good talk with my doctor about the best course of action for managing my asthma. It took several appointments before we found what worked. My doctor encouraged me to write down when and how Explain all of your symptoms and work together to figure out what your triggers are. Mine are dust and pollen. Yuck! Together, you and your doctor can come up with a game plan for what to do in case you feeling distress.
Always carry your fast acting inhaler.
When I was a kid, I despised my inhaler. I was already a geek, snorted when I laughed and had an very uncool love of Shakespeare. The last thing that I needed was to carry an inhaler too! Ha-ha! But it's so ever important that you have your inhaler and spacer with you at all times; especially during exercise. My favorite running pants have this nifty mini pocket on the back with a zipper and my inhaler fits perfectly inside.
Share your story with your gym buddies and instructors.
Make sure that your gym buddy and especially your instructors know that you have asthma. I know that you don't want everyone up in your business but they need to how to assist you in case of an emergency. Share the game plan that you came up with your doctor with them. Knowing what to do quickly could be lifesaving.
Listen to your body.
Start slowly. Focus on your breathing. If you find yourself struggling, just stop. I know that you want to push yourself, but you have to listen to your body. As I've exercised regularly, my body has started to adjust to the physical activity but that doesn't mean that I don't have asthma symptoms from time to time, especially since it's Spring and the pollen high is a million! Instead of fighting with the pollen, I choose to workout indoors.
If you have asthma, how to do keep active?
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