March 31, 2009

A Workout Without Pain

Over the weekend I went to the gym and got through my entire 45 minute workout without any pain! It was awesome! I've modified what I do A LOT to accommodate my vulvodynia and pudendal neuralgia. Saturday those changes paid off.

I was on the elliptical for 20 minutes, but I only give it 50%. That's enough to get moving and elevate my heart rate to enough to be considered low impact fat burning. Usually by 12 minutes I start to hurt. Reducing my speed and resistance reduced the trauma to my nerve.

Since the last flare I hardly sit to do any weight training. I've been standing or lying down and working my arms, shoulders and legs. I have to sit to do back, but I've VERY careful.

I'm extremely relieved that I finally had a pain-free workout.

I'm not a gym-nut, by any means, but I've found that exercising makes a big difference in my life. Working out makes me feel proud of myself and satisfied. It's also helped reduce my anxiety and helped me fall asleep faster. Sleeping has been a problem for me since college. I'm now sleeping without Ambien. I've been on Ambien for 3 years. Finally, going to the gym has improved my appearance. I gained 25 pounds on Lyrica and I've spent a year and a half trying to work it all off.

I highly reccommend some form of exercise to any woman living with vulvodynia and pudendal neuralgia. Impact can irritate the nerve, so don't go out and run a marathon or walk five miles, but get your heart beating. It feels good.


K said...

Is physical therapy an option for you? My PT has weights, cardio devices & stretching things (ball & band sets.) A PT might be able to give you instructions on some exercises or stretches that *might* ease up the PN.
But I cannot guarantee that. One of my friends with PN-vulvodynia is going to try it in a month.

Quinn said...

Wow! That's a fantastic idea! Next time I see my doctor I'll ask him to refer me to a PT.

Why didn't I think of that before?!?!?

Thank you K!

AK said...

I've been doing a lot of walking lately. I tried to run a couple of times in the last few months, and it left me in burning, searing pain. Not worth it, apparently. I do a lot of yoga too (but skipping certain poses).

I'd love to lose the extra ten pounds I've gained (thanks to medications and lack of serious exercise). Maybe I should wear my bathing suit around the house for motivational purposes? Maybe just take a picture of my butt and hang it on the fridge? ;)