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suggest a workout for asthma?

I have exercise induced asthma and when I start doing aerobic exercise, I can't breathe even though I am using my inhaler beforehand. Can anyone suggest a low intensity workout that will increase my heart rate so I can burn some calories? It is extremely discouraging because I know I need the activity in my life and to help with my weight loss. HELP!


Sat. Feb 11, 6:08pm

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Hi There,
I get the same thing-- especially if the air is dry and cold...
I have been walking on the treadmill (and outside when the weather is nice). It's been very beneficial.

One thing-- you need to build up your stamina as you work out-- no need to pass out and kill yourself!!! Try doing a lower intensity workout for longer and see if that helps. :-)

Saturday, February 11, 2006, 7:37 PM

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I've heard swimming recommended.
Also, if cold air is an issue, you might possibly do better if you wear a mask over your nose and mouth (like the kind sold in drugstores to filter out pollen, etc.) - supposedly this helps because you then re-breathe more of the same air which has already been warmed and humidified by your lungs.
I can't attest to either of these personally, but have met people who say they helped them.

Saturday, February 11, 2006, 10:55 PM

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Definitely, if you are working out at home, then try putting a humidifier in your room, both at night and during your work-outs!

Sunday, February 12, 2006, 2:13 AM

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I also have exercise-induced asthma, and I didn't even know it until starting medical school. I got sick of swimming and tried to switch to other sports but couldn't do them. Swimming is a great exercise to TRY for asthmatics. There is a world-record holder in swimming (Tom Dolan) who is a severe asthmatic. For some, the warm humid air in the indoor pool opens up their airway. For others, the mold/mildew/chlorine aggrivates it. But it is definitely worth a try. Like I said, I didn't even know I had exercise-induced asthma until I tried sports other than swimming.

Monday, February 20, 2006, 10:16 PM

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I had/have EIA- swimming is great. Also, better to exercise in the pm than am- lung capacity is 20% better at 5pm than at noon.

That being said, I now run. People can slam it all they want, but I follow the blood type diet- cut out wheat and started drinking a fair bit of yerba mate tea- no more problems with asthma. I can now do a 20 min run, when once I couldn't even fun for a min without an attack. And I haven't grown out of my asthma- if I revert to old eating habits, it's back again. But watching what I eat keeps me asthma free.

Monday, February 20, 2006, 11:38 PM

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hate to say it, but pregnancy improved my asthma no end. (not recommending this approach though... there are other considerations). Try some low impact aerobics or water aerobics. I also used to swim but found it boring. Talk to your doctor, and let him / her know what you're trying to achieve. There's a good chance you'll be able to adjust your medication. Also you could try bowling. My brother is a really severe asthmatic, but he bowls and really enjoys it. It's more exercise than sitting at home.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006, 6:23 AM

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