Have you ever thought about how working out more might be a great way to fight Multiple Sclerosis, gain strength, and connect with new friends all around the country? What if the drive there, the work out, and then getting back home safely was a concern and too much at times to manage?
Being challenged recently to do a beta testing of the MS Forward Tele-Fitness program offered in partner with Health Care Journey’s… I figured this was a challenge I would love to try!
Last night with the awesome guidance of Daryl Kucera, Owner and Founder of Fast Forward LLC, MSforward and Powerforward in Omaha, Nebraska the testing of “Tele-Fitness” began by connecting the gym in Omaha, with myself in Carlsbad, CA and another lady on the East Coast.
We worked out for approx. 45 minutes, and as shown in my video, I was certainly challenged. My level of working out recently has been very minimal due to a recent bout of Optic Neuritis, and other MS related health issues. I was skeptical that I could manage, and this would be far too difficult for me to handle.
My first impression was how fun it was to see the trainer, and others working out in Omaha, along with another screen showing me the other people working out remotely. That interaction, along with the positive guidance given to each person by Daryl, leading us through the session made the time fly!
Any apprehension I was feeling before we started: “I’m too out of shape”, “I hate to see myself and my flaws during working out”, and “I won’t be able to keep up with others” were all put at ease immediately. From the very start, no matter where you were located, the feeling of inclusion, and support from all was very apparent!
I was tired, sweating, and breathing very hard at times. Yet, as we all were encouraged, I did what I could, at the level I was able, and surprisingly was able to accomplish the entire session which gave me a huge level of pride in saying: “I DID IT”!
The training is great, and the remote aspect to me not an issue at any point. If you have a laptop, computer, phone or ipad that will allow you to access the website, have a camera and microphone you can be working out too! Barb worked with me a few day prior to ensure I had the “technical aspect” mastered… and if I can do it, anyone can! She was awesome, and walked me through the 3 minutes it took to download the software needed and test that we could connect.
We all have different levels of ability with MS, we all have good and bad days but I would say why not give this a try! When we are remote or isolated at times, this opens a door to meet new people, improve our strength, and laugh as we have fun together! I didn’t have to drive anywhere or secure transport to go to a facility as usual for Physical Therapy.
Check out “snips” of my experience (please don’t laugh too much), and come join us! (you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested) I’m looking forward to next week, and to see how this type of exercising with others, all the while in my own home brings me to a higher level of health and fitness.
MS, Take a HIKE!
I was asked to write a blog about the upcoming trial of the online exercise classes that will begin soon. Someone asked me how I felt about taking the class and did I have any concerns. When I began to think about it, my first response was " I don't want to even try it". How can they possibly bring all levels of patients together and develop something fit to every ones needs?
As some of you know, there are many days when we wake up despite our diagnosis, that we just don't want to even move. I hate exercise. However, we know it truly makes us healthier. For some our MS makes it very difficult. As for me, I have horrible balance issues, muscle spasms and severe numbness and tingling. So that said, my activity level has greatly decreased.
So with trepidation, I will give it a shot. I try as hard as it is sometimes to see the glass as half full. Trials help answer questions and concerns. Maybe the program will need separate classes for individuals needs, maybe each level of patients will inspire others with support and guidance. I don't have the answer. I only know it never hurts to try. I'll keep you posted as I begin this journey.
Do I look forward to exercising? Hell no, but I'll keep trying and thinking of it as a way to make new aquaintences and possibly do my body good. Stay tuned. And if any of you want to join us, there is still time to sign up. Just send an email to email@example.com and let them know.
A BIT ABOUT SUSAN...Susan is a registered nurse who worked in high risk obstetrics at Brigham and Women's for twenty years. She is also a certified nurse paralegal. She is currently not practicing as she is disabled because of MS. She was diagnosed 8 years ago with RRMS and has a daughter who also has MS.
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