Daily Activity and Lupus - Have you considered Stretching?
With an illness like lupus, engaging in daily activity can be uncertain. Some days, 25 jumping jacks can seem like a snap. Others, simply swinging your legs out of bed exhausts like you've just run a marathon. I recall, in particular, a period of time where every joint in my body ached, and swollen nodes along the bottom of my feet caused horrific pain with any pressure. All I could wear on my feet were slippers - truly the only shoes that didn't constrain or cause pain. So was I going lace up the sneaks to try and fit in some exercise? No way!
Fast forward a few years, and I am healthy and stable, and stronger than ever. My daily workouts (or at least 5 days a week) include cardio, leg work, weights, and abs - a far cry from what I was limited to when my disease was active! But I recently incorporated a new activity into my present workout routine - that of stretching - which would have been a perfect solution when my lupus was flaring years ago.
Stretching for 10 minutes in the morning has been so refreshing. It literally gets my blood flowing, and, while I know it sounds cheesy, I feel so alive afterward! I do legs and back, arms and neck, and I am amazed at how much tightness I have. The first day after I stretched, I got up off the floor to walk to the bathroom, and I realized how smooth and loose I was. I wasn't hobbling, and didn't even know I hobbled in the morning! (Not hobbling because of lupus pain, mind you, just old-lady-early morning-tightness hobbling.)
I find stretching to be relaxing, invigorating, and a wonderful way to check in with my body each morning. So much of disease management is about self and body awareness. Stretching would have been a wonderful way to take stock of my lupus symptom-ridden body each day. I could have made daily notes on my chronic control spreadsheet (which you can find here), tracked how i was feeling day to day, and reported back to my doctor with more precision and accuracy. Many times, I couldn't pinpoint when my pain came or went!
Hope you give it a try. If you do, or have your own helpful daily activity routine, don't forget to share in the comments. Happy stretching!