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RA exercise program

I am wondering if you can discuss what exercise program works best for those of you blessed with RA such as myself.

I am 63, blessed with RA, insomnia, and migraines.

Since my RA was diagnosed a little over a year ago I have gained almost 10 pounds. My eating habits, which are mostly healthy, have not changed. I can only attribute the weight gain to the lack of sleep or medications? My insomnia only started after my diagnosis. I get very little sleep, which makes my fatigue even worse.

My current program, as such, is 10 minutes of yoga/stretching a day, as well as about 40 minutes walking each day. Although I don’t often have the energy, I can’t help but think I need to be doing something more.

Thank you.

Mary Ramshaw

  1. Hi Mary (). It sounds like you do quite a lot already. There are studies that show that regularly getting less than six hours sleep a night can slow metabolism and lead to weight gain, especially for women. Have you ever talked with your doctor about your insomnia to see whether there is anything that can help? One easy weight to increase your metabolism is weightlifting. You don't have to do much. Even multiple reps with light weights will leave to gains in muscle gain, which burns more calories than fat. Five or ten minutes a day, alternating muscle groups can be enough. I hope that helps and that you get more input. Best wishes. - Lori (Team Member)

    1. Lori, thank you so much for your reply. Yes, I have talked to my doctor about it and have done sleep studies, including one for narcolepsy, because I have been falling asleep at the dinner table as well as while driving. Fortunately, it was negative for narcolepsy, don’t need to add that to my plate lol. I haven’t seen the sleep doctor in follow up yet, but the doctor reading my results tended to think it just has to do with my RA and poor sleep habits. In the meantime, I’m not driving very much. Do many other people with RA have these issues?

      As to the weight training, that is a very good suggestion and I will look into that. Thank you so much.

      1. thank you. I do take sleep medication, which helps me fall asleep, the problem is staying there.
        I hope everyone has a good weekend.

      2. Hi Lori, I have migraines and RA, diagnosed 20 years ago. Marijuana might help if it's legal by you. It helps me and my brother, both with RA and he says anxiety. You may have anxiety over how RA will change your life -- I know I did/do. Someone with a terminal disease once told me "I know it seems like RA is you now because it gets in your way so much. But it's not. One day you will look in the mirror and realize I just happen to have RA, sleep issues, etc. It's not me. Good luck. Keep trying solutions and be patient.

    2. that is wonderful advice! I tend to try to overdo and overthink so many things, and I am learning to adjust my attitude since my diagnosis; I have to adjust my way of thinking every day. Thanks so much for the reminder to have fun. I sometimes forget that.

      1. Hi . I think this is something we all need to be reminded about once in a while - people here get it. Please feel free to keep us posted on how you are doing. This community is here for you. Best, Richard ( Team)

    3. Walking as much as possible

      1. That's great! Walking is underrated, and it's one of my favorite workouts. I've been trying to get out there everyday despite the wintery weather. -Effie, team member

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