We all know we should be exercising more, but those living with COPD should be especially motivated to get out there — not only does exercise strengthen both body and mind, but it also helps increase circulation and improves how your body uses oxygen.
Think you’re too old or ill to change your exercise ways? Not true! No matter what your current fitness habits, you can always make changes.
Getting started with a new exercise program
First, talk with your healthcare professional about getting started with an exercise program (or ramping up your current one). They will be able to provide guidance about the kind of program that will be a good match for you. Most likely, they will recommend a program that incorporates the 3 basic types of exercises: stretching, cardio, and strength.
For a great overview, read the Cleveland Clinic article, COPD: Exercise & Activity Guidelines.
Get inspired by these athletes with COPD
- Russell Winwood, an Australian with stage-IV COPD who does triathlons, marathons, and cycling events
- Roxlyn Cole, who slowly built her fitness regimen over the span of many years to go from sub-normal fitness to doing half marathons and more
- Ted Johnson, stage-IV COPD, who went from being able to walk only a few yards at a time in 2015 to completing the Fight for Air Climb at Chicago’s Presidential Towers in 2017 (that’s 45 floors, 585 steps)