Anyone know any good methods of exercise/weight loss/toning for disabled guys?

  • jp_liverpool

    Posts: 7

    Mar 12, 2013 8:43 AM GMT
    Ok so here's my issue; I'm a gay guy, I have a rare, chronic and degenerative neurological disorder, and of course it's one of those that elicits great pain at times. However, the pain spikes every now and then and inner wren I can live a somewhat 'normal' life. The medication I'm on puts weight on me and I desperately need to lose it (I'll post a pic on my profile later).

    I never used to be fat and I've lost weight about 6 times now; every time my condition has spiked I'm laid up in pain, eating because I have to and on more meds, and all the hard work I've done is erased.

    I wanna get back to being the 'true' me, that is without this fat on me and hopefully a bit of tone. Does anyone happen to know any exercises or cardio and nutrition that can help? Bearing in mind that its my arms that are most affected and my muscles are suffering from atrophy as part of the condition?

    It's unlikely I can easily build muscle but I'm willing to put in the graft. I'm just hoping a community of body builders and fitness experts may be able to help.
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    Mar 12, 2013 9:57 AM GMT
    Have you tried low-impact exercises and cardio equipment? And swimming and aquatic exercises?

    I also must take medications for life that cause me to gain weight, not helped by advanced age and limited mobility. At times I can barely walk, and always have a cane. But I can bicycle because the pedaling demands on my legs & feet are less than walking. I call my bike my "2-wheeled wheelchair" and I even have a folding cane I can take along.

    If your balance, strength or other issues won't let you ride a bike on the streets, then use indoor stationary, and machines like ellipticals and stair-steppers.
  • jp_liverpool

    Posts: 7

    Mar 12, 2013 11:07 AM GMT
    Hi thanks for your reply.

    Yea I do swim, or at least I've just started. I'm starting out today, on my latest weight loss programme. I've designed this myself with the hep of the resources on this site, my abilities and nutrition advice I've received from body builder friends of mine here in the UK.

    I can do stationary bikes, and again, I've started that today. I'm just wondering I there are any other exercises, or maybe adaptations to exercises anyone is aware of that I might be able to do to bolster my efforts to get back into shape.

    I hadn't thought of the stair stepper, so I'll give that a go. I'm also starting leg raises and sit ups.

    I appreciate the reply and the suggestions, I'll give them a go.
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    Mar 12, 2013 1:35 PM GMT
    Chronic medical conditions suck (20 years of type 1 diabetes here).
    If you want to chat, feel free to send me private message.

    I am also thinking water exercises for resistance but easier on joints, but maybe talk to other people with the same condition...not only does it help you feel less isolated but they will have been here before you...

    Andrew.
    Member of the muted pancreas club.

    Edit: just read other thread and lack of a name for the condition. Instead maybe do some searching on signs/symptoms to find people facing similar obstacles as you are (fibromyalgia ??)
  • petemdc

    Posts: 136

    Mar 12, 2013 2:30 PM GMT
    Have you considered meeting with a physical or occupational therapist, one who specializes in treatments for people with your condition? I would think that your physician would gladly refer you for consultation, at least!

    Range of motion exercises can be very helpful to reduce atrophy, especially in your arms.
  • jp_liverpool

    Posts: 7

    Mar 12, 2013 2:46 PM GMT
    Thanks for both of your replies.

    I will look into fibromyalgia and see if anybody on here has had success in training or adapting training for it.

    My doctor did refer me to an occupational therapist years a go, but as it hadn't affected me very much at that point not much was said, now there's a little trouble getting referred. I made an appointment to see him today and he said he will look into a referral, so here's hoping.
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    Mar 12, 2013 4:22 PM GMT
    jp_liverpool saidOk so here's my issue; I'm a gay guy, I have a rare, chronic and degenerative neurological disorder, and of course it's one of those that elicits great pain at times. However, the pain spikes every now and then and inner wren I can live a somewhat 'normal' life. The medication I'm on puts weight on me and I desperately need to lose it (I'll post a pic on my profile later).

    I never used to be fat and I've lost weight about 6 times now; every time my condition has spiked I'm laid up in pain, eating because I have to and on more meds, and all the hard work I've done is erased.

    I wanna get back to being the 'true' me, that is without this fat on me and hopefully a bit of tone. Does anyone happen to know any exercises or cardio and nutrition that can help? Bearing in mind that its my arms that are most affected and my muscles are suffering from atrophy as part of the condition?

    It's unlikely I can easily build muscle but I'm willing to put in the graft. I'm just hoping a community of body builders and fitness experts may be able to help.


    My local community college offers a couple of courses ( in the gym) for people with disabilities. There was a guy in my class that only had use of one arm and then the typical stroke victims. I was able to stop my neurological disorder
    ( auto immune system disorder) with Paleo diet and yoga but the muscle atrophy is still a challenge. But in some ways my problem is a blessing because I learned a lot and the rest of me is way more healthy.
  • SomeSiciliano...

    Posts: 543

    Mar 12, 2013 5:00 PM GMT
    Hmmmm.....sounds allot like a condition I was diagnosed with in 06/07..except mine was centered in my lower back and pelvis. I ballooned from a highly active athletic 165 to zero active 250 in less than a year. The most common medical opinion was to leave my line of work and start using a cane.

    I have a limited range of motion in my legs and back and worked with a PT to figure out what can be done safely. Allot of my cardio routine involves water....swimming, resistance exercises, etc. The second component was diet. I was a 'healthy' eater before...almost all my adult life. With the counsel of a nutritionist, I had to start anew and reprogram my body to use micronutrients to counterl inflammation. . More than half my diet is leafy green plants and cruciferous vegetables...dark fruit and very lean protein like fish, chicken and turkey. I avoid dairy, grains, sugar in all forms (including sweet fruit) and processed meats. It is allot like Alpha13's Paleo regimen.

    I am not sure about what your National Health covers...but a good deep tissue massage once a month may help. We have to pay in the USA (about 65 USD) but it is worth it. Part of my condition is that my body grows more fascia than usual and it chokes off blood flow and lymphatic fluids.

    Best to you in your journey. I TOTALLY understand the frustration and depression involved. It has been 4 years and I am down to 185lbs (84kg). There will be progress and setbacks. I still work in the job I love and I do not use a cane....in fact, I am looking forward to the start of volleyball season in April.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 12, 2013 10:23 PM GMT
    The smith machine is pretty versatile and there is very little that can go wrong with it if you use it safely (i.e. with the safety catch on). You could also do a good circuit on the resistance machines with no worries. I agree you would get a lot out of a PT session, a good one will have studied different conditions and how they affect ability to train.
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    Mar 12, 2013 10:25 PM GMT
    petemdc saidHave you considered meeting with a physical or occupational therapist, one who specializes in treatments for people with your condition? I would think that your physician would gladly refer you for consultation, at least!

    Range of motion exercises can be very helpful to reduce atrophy, especially in your arms.


    I agree with this guy, if I were you I would honestly reaaaally consider trying to find a person specialized in your condition and hopefully you can find a trainer for a month or two who can teach you correct form in whatever exercise you choose to do, whether it be weights, swimming, or anything.

    It is REALLY easy to get injured at the gym, I've been injured in the past, my roommate is currently injured and has to be out of the gym for 3-4 weeks. Basically, if you don't watch your movements carefully, you could end up doing more harm to your body than any good at all.

    Good luck on finding what works best for you and great job trying to workout regardless of what life throws your way icon_smile.gif
  • jp_liverpool

    Posts: 7

    Mar 13, 2013 9:19 AM GMT
    Thanks for all of the replies.

    If I get onto this Pain Management Programme then I will ask if they know any decent PT's near me and I'll ask about seeing a nutritionist too. In the meantime I'll look up PT's in my area and see if any of them have experience working with patients of degenerative neurological disorders.

    Unfortunately, with the doctors unable to positively identify my condition (it's gotten to the point that they're in collaboration with doctors from other countries to try and identify it, as a national expert in Oxford couldn't ID it either), I can't find a PT that specialises in my condition. So I'll have to go for one that works in general area and hope they know some limits, and force me to stay within them. I've not had the best track record with PT's to date, because they either don't set goals that are challenging or aren't accustomed to dealing with people with disabilities; I'm in a real awkward area of spectrum haha

    I appreciate the help and advice from everyone so far and want you to know it isn't falling on deaf ears, I will put what I can into practice.