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Hi all

An interesting response to our post on the OMS FB page a couple of days ago about a new paper showing that exercise actually improves fatigue (Exercise when Fatigued). The response
Don't really understand, when I am battling fatigue I can hardly move a muscle let alone walk!
was very representative of what many people with MS believe about fatigue, and many health professionals have taught over the years, that the solution is to conserve energy. Well the paper we posted, and our important HOLISM data show exactly the reverse: the more one exercises, the more energy one has, and the less fatigue. Actually our key paper on fatigue in 2,500 people with MS from 57 countries showed that healthier lifestyles are associated with much less fatigue, and another paper showed that people following the OMS approach have dramatically less fatigue, about one-third the risk of being seriously fatigued: the things that keep you well after a diagnosis of MS also prevent fatigue. What a win-win situation!

Post your experiences below and we'll make this post a forum 'sticky', for future reference.

Enjoy your exercise...
Hi Prof J and everyone
Yes, I completely agree with this counterintuitive research finding.

I remember well enquiring about attending one of your retreats in 2011 and being told that a 30 - 45 minute walk was scheduled each day to which I replied incredulously 'don't you know I have MS, I can't possibly do that'. How wrong was I!

Today I recognise the importance and value of moving regularly to promote good mobility into old age. 'Use it or lose it' is a good motto I think.

I discovered the physical benefits slowly but experienced the psychological benefits eg post run high, after only a short time. One day I just realised that I always seemed to feel better in the afternoons after I went for a run. Then of course I got greedy and ran a bit more and before long discovered that you can overdo things and feel worse. Ouch.

I'm back doing workouts and runs three days a week after poor winter weather prevented me from getting out. I feel so much better for doing regular exercise both physically and mentally, a feeling I certainly wouldn't have ever believed possible back in 2011.

Developed 5 May 2011, Diagnosed 4 Aug 2011, OMS 15 Sept 2011, Gluten-Free 22 February 2012, Recovery declaration 2 September 2014, Relapse 14 October 2019, Recovery declared again 1 November 2020.
I absolutely agree! Exercise boosts my energy. Sometimes I feel as if I need to take a nap and instead I choose to exercise. Without fail, I feel better after the exercise. I mix up the workouts with running, yoga and P90X30. I'm a runner so that is my favorite thing! After a nice long run, I cannot detect my sensory issues and I feel symptom free. That is my favorite time of the day!
Great to hear from you Alex, and Catgirl. Yes, you have come a long way in a short time Alex... The future certainly looks bright!

Be well

I also couldn't agree more that exercise really helps fatigue. In 2011 I was hit by my first ms attack & could barely walk in hospital & with no energy. Fast track since then after changing to OMS immediately & attending a retreat in 2012, today I swim 80 - 100 laps, 4 times a week in a 25 metre pool & also do some land training for muscle strengthening. It has helped me enormously with fatigue. I no longer need to take naps & when you are fit, you have far more energy. The other thing that helped with fatigue also was to increase my intake of flaxseed oil.

Today I watched CBS Sunday Morning and there was a segment on how "Rock Steady Boxing" is helping people with Parkinson's. The researcher on the program spoke about how it has improved the symptoms of people with Parkinson's and how there have been changes in the brains of people doing this program. I know this isn't MS and I think there could be a correlation. Here is the link in case you like to watch the news story. Good story supporting exercise!

​Fighting back against Parkinson's - in the ring http://www.cbsnews.com/news/fighting-ba ... n-the-ring
I agree too. In Holland we have a saying, "rest rusts" and that goes for everyone. I love to go for a walk but when I have other things to do on a day I just don't have the energy to go for a walk. I guess skipping a day or two in a week is ok. You can't overdo it or force it.
For people who don't like or are not able to walk I can recommend Essentrics workout. Google it and you will find it an accessible exercise. Good luck to everyone!
What an interesting topic!

I do a lot of running. I run 20-30 km most weeks (a run being 8 km plus) but recently I've been feeling tired after my (in the morning only) runs to a point where I have to nap in the afternoon because I'm just too tired. That then tends to mess-up my night time sleeping.
I am fatigued and I take rest because that's what my body seems to want at the moment.

I've been doing really well for the first 8 months of the year being able to train and run and enjoyed taking part in my first two Half Marathons.

I completely sign up to the idea that exercise helps combat fatigue in general. I also see the 'dangers' of overtraining.
I've cut back on my training only working out (running) twice a week now to see if my need to nap can be helped with that.

I also suffer from a rare liver disease and know my glycogen storage is reduced as a result of that, So I'm experimenting with increasing my refueling during runs. Run less, rest, eat more... :lol: (that sounds like the opposite to what most people in the western society are recommended to do.) I'm not sure what else to do.


Oh, I'm symptom free EDSS 0. Suspected MS diagnosis 1997, confirmed diagnosis 2009, OMS 2011 EDSS 3.0
Something that I find puzzling about exercise is how, on days when gravity feels as if doubled, treacle legs gone turgid, enthusiasm near nil, and energy tanks on low, if I tog up and force myself outside just for a small meander. Something odd happens. At the outset I would swear in honesty that I have no spare energy, that I'm a complete crock. Then obstinately shuffling off in a mincing weak walk. Just aiming to get around the block and then I can sign off with "I tried". But half way around the legs and head seem less leaden. Continuing more, there's strength appearing from nowhere. Then perhaps a slight stumble trips me into a slight jog for a bit. Then ... what the heck, I'll just see if I can trot over there, say between lamp posts. Next thing I know and I've forgotten to stop, and trotting turns to jogging. I'm wearing too many layers. And now my head's held higher, and I'm getting positively sticky. More layers off. And now I'm positively kicking myself as there's a proper jog, even a run, in those legs. A bit of rhythm comes to motion, arms coordinating. And I'm trying less now than at the outset. This usually turns into a power walk or some ridiculous jog with ludicrous layers flapping about my waist. In less inclement weather, with a hint of sunlight, I'll strip bare on top, and just leave legs to sauna.

Now back home and washed, where I hadn't expected to need to. My general metabolism's tick-over revved up a notch. And where did that fatigue, fog, and gravity disappear to.

The experience for me is consistently that my very real sense of fatigue (at times when it creeps in) could be a complete mirage. Something that fools my best self control, so perfectly, that I really am convinced that I can't. Can't exercise. Have no get-up-and-go. Should zonk out and I need to hug a sofa, till something comes along to dissolve this zip downer away. Till some outside force helps me.

But now the super puzzle. The next time that siren deceiver comes along and stealthily slides double gravity into my mind and limbs, I'm completely fooled again, and would swear before her majesty and anyone's saints that I have no vim in me. But, I can't think of a time when that hasn't proves a big fat lie.

Of course that's just me, and everyone overwhelmed with fatigue will justifiably bash my findings to ridicule. But my conclusion is that some fatigue can be a crafty cheat, fooling me that I have less in me than I do. That the solution is to ignore it, try a little, get started , no matter how tiny the effort. Find out if there's more in the tank.

If some of fatigue is in the mind rather than muscles, then there may be some possibility for anyone to have a go at out tricking that seductive reality distortion.

Is it like going on a walk or jog, and half way around feeling some animal fear that I could die doing this, completely hit the bump stops. But logic says that that is complete balderdash. I'll not get anywhere near dying. In fact the complete opposite. In no time, I'll be home, tucking into a bigger plate of greens with more hunger and sparkle inside. Things can be so deceptive.

My suggestion is less ambition, less anticipation, less defensiveness, no justification. Just gave it a teeny tiny go, just see what might grow, see what's pretending it's gone walkabout, but is really nearby and available. Energy.

For me, the more exercise the better. Better for boosted energies for many things more than just more physical effort. Exercise is my tonic of choice for blowing stress right out of my world. Glooms too.

I wasn't made for funks, that feels like time sliding away unused. I know that some others feel differently, but I'm quite sure that I was intrinsically built to move, to be physical, to be out and about, active, seeing, feeling, interactive, making, mending, laughing, and doing something. Living.
At first glance this last post was too long to read. I gave it a go, and am glad I did. Well put Mess Positive. I heard Montel Williams (who also has MS) say his excercise routine in the morning starts with the cracking of the outer shell that has grown to encase him over night. Not in those words, but you get the concept. Thanks for writing this on here. Words must be your craft.

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