The official blog of the Lung Institute.
Although lung diseases like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and pulmonary fibrosis are often seen as debilitating, there is often a substantial benefit to starting a lung disease exercise plan. The lungs respond to exercise like many of the muscles in your body. Through exercise you can see improvement in lung function or in your quality of life, and these 5 easy steps for starting an exercise plan for lung disease can help you get there today.
5. Research an Exercise Plan for Lung Disease
Battling a lung disease is not a good time to jump on the latest exercise trend. Investigate the various exercise plans out there. Look at breathing exercises, lung-friendly exercises and even a pulmonary rehabilitation program to start. Some plans won’t fit your lifestyle or your current ability, depending on the progression of your disease. Read all of the details outlined in the specific plans. Finally, print out copies of a few plans you like.
4. Consult with Your Pulmonologist
Take your top programs to your pulmonologist. Your physician will be able to suggest programs that offer you the best chance to potentially improve your lung function and quality of life. They will also be able to help you set realistic goals for your exercise plan for lung disease. They may refer you to a physical trainer who specializes in lung rehabilitation.
Be vocal when you meet with your doctor. If you don’t understand something, say so. Sometimes it’s quite difficult to understand the complicated explanations your doctor may provide. Just as in the case of prescribed medication and other treatment plans, the last thing you want to do is misunderstand the doctor’s advice when it comes to approaching an exercise plan for lung disease.
3. Pace Yourself
Too much physical activity too fast can be harmful to even the healthiest among us. Your disease doesn’t mean you can’t do the things you want; it means you have to be measured. Starting an exercise plan for lung disease is no different. There will be activities that’ll seem surprisingly easy, and others that may have been easy to you in the past that are now quite difficult. Listen to your body. If the activity is too hard, stop and write it down. Follow up with your physical trainer or physician regularly to report what activities were the most challenging.
2. Diet and Exercise to Improve Lung Health
There is an adage many dietitians use that says, “you can’t outrun a fork.” Essentially, they are saying that no matter how often you exercise, if your diet is not aligned with your fitness goals, you won’t reach them. The same is true for a self-managed lung disease treatment program. A lung-friendly diet will not only help increase your chances of improving your lung function with an exercise plan for lung disease, it can also help decrease the likelihood and severity of symptom flare-ups.
1. Stay Motivated
As we’ve discussed, there are multiple components to an exercise plan for lung disease. It’s important not to look at such a plan as a singular action. Exercise, diet and help from a clinician are all important parts of achieving success. Stay motivated by asking a friend to join you in your exercise routine, or call a family member and tell them about your success.
Finding a treatment plan for your lung disease to augment the other actions you have taken to improve your help is imperative. Unlike the past few decades in which there have been very few advancements in COPD treatment options, there are now alternative and natural treatment options available to you.
One of the most progressive forms of COPD treatment is cellular therapy. This minimally invasive, outpatient procedure is conducted using cells from your own body to potentially return lung function and improve quality of life. Interested in learning more about cellular therapy? Contact the Lung Institute by calling (800) 729-3065 today to see if you qualify.
Tell us about exercises that have helped you!