There is a myth that people living with the sickle cell condition should not participate in exercise activities. This is because it is believed that strenuous activities like exercising causes can trigger crisis. While this is true to an extent, there are some tips to take into consideration to enable one exercise without falling into a crisis. Please fine below:
- Hydrate: You can never drink too much water when you have sickle cell disease because water is your best friend. Take it everywhere with you; to the gym, in your car, at work, at school, and of course at home. When you exercise you perspire, and sweat makes you more dehydrated. So if you plan to exercise drink before, during, and after; and never wait until thirsty before drinking water.
- Stretch: A good warm up gets your muscles nice and supple and ready to work out. Without stretching you are at a higher risk for injury and pain. Stretching also gives you time to connect with your body and kind of feel what you need to get done in that day and see if you are up for it. However, stop stretching if you become to feel pains.
- Cardio: Cardio is good for you but should never be too intense. You need to find out where your safety zone is. You do this by finding how high your heart we can go and then you calculate 50 to 75% less than that. This is your safety zone, so with cardio calculate your safety zone and stay in the zone.
- Activities: You can get involved in some activities such as; pilates, yoga, walking, jogging, low intensity workouts, biking, some aerobic exercises, and lifting weights. Other people have tried with limited success; swimming, rock climbing, running, hiking, etc. The general suggestion is that you should listen to your body, and take it easy at first in order to build to your goal activity level.
- Weight Lifting. They had the general appeal of gaining muscles, burning fat, and low cardiac impact. Many guys suggested that gave them the body that they wanted without having to stress about having a crisis afterwards. Sometimes it is better to have higher repetitions, with less weights. This builds muscular endurance, great veins, and does not bulk you up too much.
Find the best work out regimen that works for you. Stretch well before and after. Even if you do fall sick, do not use this as an excuse to stop working out. When you get better, pick back right where you left off and keep on going. Don’t get frustrated because you fell sick. It just means that you were probably overdoing it. Take your knocks, learn your lessons, and move on to your next workout plan.