I started work in June and I was doing pretty well until about the beginning of October (eating well, exercise, getting enough sleep and of course doing meds).
Fall and winter are the times that are the roughest on me - granted it's MUCH better than it was 10-15 years ago before I treated my allergies with shots, environmental controls, EXERCISE (oh yes, exercise reduces inflammation big time for me), anti-histamines and leukotriene agonists. But I still get a bit tighter in the fall/winter and it makes clearing mucus that much tougher.
Plus, things at my job were making me more tired around this time so I have to admit that my exercising went from about 3-4/week with Jillian to about 1x a week. Not sure about the rest of you all, but I don't fully grasp how crappy I feel until I start to feel better. I'm not sure if my self-awareness is just horrendous or if we CFer's are able to adapt so well to the ups and downs of our illnesses we just cope easily.
So as a result of less exercise, more stress, fatigue, and fall allergies, I had some pretty decent hemoptysis on Halloween. As you would expect, I was on 2 weeks of IV's where I didn't exercise a whole lot due to simple fear of coughing more blood / being wiped out from the IV's. I also threw another DVT so I was on blood thinners 'til mid december and of course that freaked me out because if I coughed up blood with Lovenox in my system, that would be BAD BAD news.
I got a 2 week break after the IV's before I caught a wicked cold where naturally I was preparing for some more hemoptysis. Thank God that didn't happen (lungs were probably in better shape because I had just finished IV's?) although the cold lasted for a good 2 weeks and I had to fight it with nebbed Colistin and PO Lequin. I felt better after 2 weeks of treatment, but never fully back to normal.
After about a week of the cold/ CF PA exacerbation being gone and I caught a stomach virus that was going around. Luckily no puking or the runs, but unbelievable stomach cramps, nausea, fevers and no appetite for about 4 days.
I also got my Mirena put in the 1st week of December and had a lovely period that lasted nearly 4 weeks. Cramps were pretty horrendous as well and I just decided to give myself the holidays off from exercising (not treatments) after a really tough 2 months.
So what's my point?
My point is, I started 2010 anew.
- My period finally ended and I feel so good with this Mirena. I mean really, really, really good. I can't wait to see if this continues.
- I am back on the exercise band wagon with Jillian Michaels' video that I wrote about last May. Yes, I took a good 3 months off from consistent exercising so it was pretty tough getting back in to shape. But MAN, do I feel good. I cough up 2-3 plugs/day about the size of my pinky finger nail and my problem area (right middle lobe) hasn't felt this good in probably well over a year. I have much more energy, and moods are amazing. Not goign to lie - when it's time to exercise I get pretty angry... I am not the type of person that likes to work out. At all. Buuuuuuuuuuuut I refer to my list that I made for 2010 to remind myself of the benefits of exercise and the consequences of not exercising:
-Lower chance of diabetes by creating muscle mass that contains more insulin receptors
-Lower chance of osteoporosis related fracture by creating muscle mass which leads to inreased bone mass
-Better moods which leads to better performance on the job, happier relationships and overall increased enjoyment of life
-Lower chance of hemoptysis because I'm clearing areas of my lungs that I couldn't otherwise clear doing CPT, IV's or coughing
-Lower chance of exacerbation because exercising decreases inflammation in my lungs, and inflammation can inhibit mucus clearance
-Increase FEV1 which is the best predictor of life expectancy. VX-809 may or may not come to fruition, but in case it does, I'm determined to have the best lungs possible to maximize the benefits of the drug
-Increase immune system, and in turn chances of catching a virus that could cause permanent lung damage
And the list could go on and on.... but for me, this is enough to get me motivated.
So my point? I feel off the exercise bandwagon for a host of reasons - the first time I've fallen off since I started consistent, regular exercise in June 2007. Seriously.
But, by undersatnding the factors that contributed to me falling off the bandwagon and setting myself up for success by understanding the long list of benefits of exercising just 45 minutes 3x/week, I am more likely to stay on the bandwagon the next time things get tough.
Have no respect for the status quo. FIGHT ON