General

Too Busy for Exercise

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19 Nov 2016 - General
 

photo from Target Health Global - Target Health Inc

"Doctor, I do not have the time for exercise."

"My schedule makes it impossible to fit in an exercise regimen."

"Aren't medicines supposed to keep me healthy already?"

"Do I really have to exercise?"

These are some of the most common statements I hear when I stress the need for regular exercise. It scratches my head when patients believe that they do not have time for exercise. My favorite answer is that there is no time for anything until we make time for it. Whenever patients decline to see the point of exercising, we must stress the need further. If they still refuse to hear our explanation, we must do a better job of pointing the necessity of physical ativity to prevent medical complications. Sometimes, it takes just one witty response like this example from a medical comic to make patients amenable to a regular exercise program.

For the MIMS community, how do you stress the need for exercise to a patient who claims to be busy?

Savio Figueiredo Thank you for stressing on the 4 solid points regarding this topic. I really agree with the first one. Look the part and act the part as a healthcare professional. We have no business being overweight or obese because people view as role models. We would essentially lose credibility if we repeatedly ask patients to lose weight but we also look like we could use some exercise. Also, people have to...
 (Total 122 words)
Neelam Nath Thank you for pointing out the need to individualize workout regimens according to co-morbidities. It should really be tailored to each individual. Even the target heart rate is calculated to determine the safe training intensity for a person's age. The Karvonen formula is used to determine the intensity with the following equations: Heart rate (HR) max = 220- age HR reserve = HR max - HR resting;...
 (Total 124 words)
HT WEE Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Personality is indeed a neglected factor in ensuring compliance with exercise routines. However, we must not let a patient's personality be the limiting factor as healthcare professionals. It is our obligation to explain the benefits of regular exercises to their health. Most patients will view this benefits as their intrinsic motivation to exercise. This type of mo...
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I have the following points to make
1. First of all you must practice what you preach, so if you are suggesting that your client/patient should exercise , you should be doing it first. If I am obese and sloppy , I should not be giving such advice.
2. Relate exercise to mobility . Climbing steps, doing gardening or an active lifestyle is good enough for normal people. For others who need more strenuous exercise link it lower BP or Blood sugar reading, alert brain, weight loss, better...
 (Total 135 words)
Exercise Programme should be individualistic,depending on age,weight,lifestyle,heart-lung health and will power. Lungs suffering from COPD grade 1 may tire a person for want of more oxygen but after a heart attack/ bypass surgery the same person may see others going for a 5 km walks as suggested by the surgeon.This person can be suggested yoga with breathing exercises and more oxygen through green plants and less exposure to polluted air.
This person has an 'excuse' about avoiding ex...
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Kali Mishra Thank you for sharing your experience with encouragement of patients to increase their physical activity levels. You are nipping it in the root cause of sedentary lifestyle - resentment towards exercise. Patients who are sedentary will often think that they do not need it or that it is overrrated. With this mentality, it is easy to bail out on a scheduled exercise session. Your method of telling patie...
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Rohidas Shetty Thank you for sharing your tip on promoting physical activity to patients. Great! I am very interested in your article. Are you posting the article in the MIMS community too? It would be a great room for discussion. Exercising while watching television improves compliance especially for cardiovascular exercises. Most gyms have screens in front of treadmills. If there is no television set available, ...
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NIKHIL NARVEKAR Thank you for pointing out that lack of equipment should not be a limiting factor for doing exercise regularly. We have a lot of home exercises available online that can be done using our bodyweight. I like your concept of jogging in place because it takes up minimal space. Jumping jacks is also a good cardio and coordination exercise. Resistance exercises can be done by adding a pause to bodyweigh...
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One does not have to visit a gymnasium for doing exercises. There are simple exercises which can be done at or around home. The absence of implements like tread mills or weights does not matter. Walking , running for 5 minutes or jogging at the same place are quite effective to burn the calories or improve blood circulation for cardiac health. If there is no time for this, there are simple exercises to be done at home like pushups against the ground or dips against the bed. One must start gradu...
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Alan Rosmadi Thank you for giving pointers and emphasizing the need to find time for exercise. Exercise and physical activity can be fun especially when you have kids. Playing with kids are fun, create lasting bonding moments, and heart-friendly at the same time. It challenges the mind too when playing games with kids. I miss the time when kids were playing with each other and running and screaming around. Gadget...
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All i can say to this is make time for exercise. Time management is key to success. All of us are tied up to a career and family. Why not include exercise as part of your work and family time. You can always incorporate exercise into work. For example taking the stairs instead of the lift. Or simple hitting the gym when it is your lunch break. For exercise during family days, You can always make a routine exercise day before indulging into a feast with your family. Makes things healthier and do ...
 (Total 148 words)
Tarah Cadiz Showing up gets you halfway through exercising. Lacing up those running shoes or standing at the first sound of the alarm are the things that we struggle to do. It takes discipline to resist laziness. Thank you for mentioning a patient's concern of seeing results. This is often a neglected area to raise when starting an exercise program. Health improvements begin immediately after exercise; howeve...
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Jibesh Patra You are right. Intentional exercise is tiring when it is forced. Hence, we cannot force patients to just enrol in the gym, swim, or bike. We have to know what interests them the most. They can opt for gardening, dancing, playing with grandkids, trekking, or whatever physical activity they find interesting. It should not be confined to formal exercise regimen as long as they move. By following his or ...
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Chih Chiang Nieh I like the PRECEDE framework as a tool for exercise motivation. It will really work when you facilitate a patient's understanding that exercise can help him/her achieve his current priority or goal. Getting a patient to agree is one thing. Getting a patient started is another. We must really ease patients into an exercise program if they have no previous experience with an exercise regimen. ...
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Kathleen Peralta Like I've said, I really wish roads here would present an option to ride a bike to work. It simply would not work in our current road condition. It is true that people have to be receptive with the idea of living an active lifestyle. It takes a lot of convincing and more patience to allow closed-minded patients to hear our point. Exercising is an even a harder sell once a patient gets older a...
 (Total 89 words)