Question 1: I’m new to working out with POTS! What are some exercises to start? Just getting from bed to the next room is hard now.
Hi there! Good news: working out can be HELLA LAZY! Here are some of my favorite floor-bound exercises based on the goal.
Disclaimer: PSC/ I am not a doctor. The below is not medical advice. Follow at your own risk. 🙂
Goal: Muscle Tone
Target: Legs/ Glutes
Exercise 1: Doggy Glutes
Begin on your hands and knees. Keeping your left knee on the ground, raise your right bent knee so that your thigh makes a straight line from your hip to your knee. Engage your glute. Lower your knee back down to the starting position. For an added challenge, don’t rest it when it gets back down. Repeat 10 times, then on the other leg.
Exercise 2: Doggy Glutes 2- Straight Leg
Begin on your hands and knees. Keeping your left knee on the ground, raise your right bent knee so that your thigh makes a straight line from your hip to your knee. Engage your glute. Now, straighten your leg but keep your foot flexed. Keeping your abs engaged, lower your leg just an inch or two, feeling the glute doing all the work. Raise it back up. Repeat this tiny motion 10-20 times. Repeat on the other side.
Exercise 3: Seated T’s
Sit on the edge of a chair with your back straight. Make a field goal position with your arms (elbows out straight from your shoulders, arms bent at elbows), clench fists, or keep hands open if that’s most comfortable for you. Exhale as you push your arms up to straighten them. Inhale as you pull them back down to starting.
Larger range of motion: Pull arms down all the way into your sides before extending back up.
Goal: Slight Cardio
Exercise 1: Doggy Limb Raises
Begin on your hands and knees. Shift your weight to your right arm. Raise your left arm straight in front of you until it is level with your ear. Slowly bring it back to the starting position. Repeat with your left arm, then your left arms and legs.
Bonus Level: Try doing this with your right arm and left leg at the same time, then the left arm and right leg at the same time
Exercise 2: Plank Crab Walks
If exercise 1 is too easy for you, and you can do a plank, go ahead and give this a try.
In a plank position, raise one hand up to your shoulder, then put it down. Experiment with raising arms and legs. Then try ‘walking’ a step to the left or right as you do this. Not so easy, huh?
Exercise 3: Plank “jumping jacks”
In a plank position, similar to exercise 2, try doing “jumping jacks” by moving your arms and legs out and in. Do right arm and right leg at the same time, the left arm and left leg. Experiment if you feel comfortable.
Question 2: I have mastered medium level floor workouts, but can’t seem to work up to running! What do you recommend?
Disclaimer: Everyone’s POTS is different, and everyone’s body is different. This is just what worked for me, but I am happy to share it!
I started on the recumbent bicycle, level 1. I worked up to 20 minutes, then worked up to level 4 or so. I decided I felt strong enough to try the stationary bike. I worked up to 20 minutes on this (level 1 and first, then up to 4), then would start the following on different days.
Workout 1: 10 min recumbent bike, 5 min elliptical, 5 min recumbent bike (did this for 2-4 weeks)
Workout 2: 10 min recumbent bike, 10 min elliptical (did this for 2-4 weeks)
Workout 3: 5 min recumbent bike, 15 min elliptical (you could start jogging here, I get shin splints so at this point I could only elliptical)
Workout 4: 10 min recumbent bike, 10 min walk/ jog
Workout 5: 5 min recumbent bike, 15 min walk/ jog
Workout 6: 20 min walk/ jog
NOTE: this wasn’t always linear! Some days I felt horrible and stepped back to workout 1 after I had been on workout 5. And that is OK. This still happens- some days I can run 4 miles, others I can’t even get out of bed. Accept where you’re at. You’ve got this.