Fatigue and Exercise: Finding my Balance
While I was pregnant with my third child, life continued to be a whirlwind. But it had been ten years since I’d been pregnant and it was obvious I needed to slow down. I was hit with the fatigue many pregnant women experience; however, that was a new experience for me. Until then, I always had energy to do what I wanted to do. Pre-pregnancy, my Saturdays consisted of working out for hours, running errands, cleaning my house and mowing the lawn – all in the same day! During this pregnancy, I could barely peel myself off the couch most days. While I didn’t have any full blown panic attacks during that pregnancy or the next pregnancy nine months later, I’ve struggled with fatigue ever since.
Exercise and fatigue can act as conflicting forces. Many people, like myself, need exercise for good mental health. However, the more you stress your body with exercise, the more fatigued you may feel. There is a compromise though, a lesson I’ve learned the hard way: You don’t have to exercise everyday or for long periods of time to feel the benefits of exercise. In fact, exercising too much or inefficiently can be counter-productive as it’ll be too hard on your body.
Exercise tips if you experience chronic fatigue
- Never sacrifice sleep for exercise. If you don’t get enough sleep the night before, skip the intense workout. Take a walk or do some other very light exercise for 10-20 minutes that day.
- Fuel your body before and after your workout, such as eating a small piece of fruit with a bit of nut butter. Fasted cardio (not eating for several hours prior to working out) can be hard on your body which can lead to fatigue the rest of your day.
- Walk and do yoga. There are many different forms of yoga, all with a variety of benefits, including flexibility, strength-building, and mental strength. Walking is often an over-looked form of exercise with many health benefits too including helping your physical and mental health.
If you’re looking for a fun and relaxing yoga program for free, check out Yoga with Adriene on YouTube.
Have an amazing week!