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PACING (a question)

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by taniaaust1, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    Most of us pace our activities to stop a crash from doing too much but my question is When you do this, does at all actually extend how much you find you can do in a day?

    I personally find there is a limit that I can do in a 24-45hr period no matter how I break up things eg I "used to" find I could do 90mins cleaning a day whether I did it in 15min sessions or if I did it in a couple of 45min sessions or even as a 90min session (that was before I got POTS). The result was the same with extra 15 min sessions over that total time done even if I had only done it in 15min periods with rest in between would crash me, so I couldnt go really over a total amount of exercise (cleaning) for the day.

    Do others here find this too with physical activity. That there are daily limits you cant go over without crashing?

    Do you find this same issue with mental activities too?
     
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  2. daisybell

    daisybell Senior Member

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    Hmmm!
    I certainly have limits to how much I can do in a day - I know that doing too much in one go will decrease that limit, but whether really good pacing increases it, I'm not sure about. My limit is quite variable anyway because I tend to have a few better weeks and then a worse week or two.

    I haven't worn my Fitbit for a while, but I used to find that 3,500 steps was my safe limits for 24 hours - more than that was too much and I paid for it. I don't think I could do those steps all in one go without immediate payback.

    I also definitely have a cognitive limit...

    I think it's difficult for me to pace sufficiently well to know the answer to your question. There's always things that need to be done, so I only very rarely have the luxury of staying well within my limits, and I have never done this for long enough to know how beneficial it is.... Writing this down makes me think I'm not managing my energy well, but that's the life I have currently!
     
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  3. PennyIA

    PennyIA Senior Member

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    I haven't found that pacing increases my tolerance or limits. It increases or decreases on it's own (I have relapsing/remission type). It does help prevent mild crashes which hopefully mean fewer relapses and less severe PEM in the meantime.
     
  4. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    I have found that pacing helps prevent bad days. Its not pacing but having a good day or a bad day that determines what I can do. There are still limits. Duration of activity is important though. These days I try to limit many things to under five minutes, and preferably just one or two minutes. Mental activity varies. Some tasks I can do for only seconds, others for hours, it totally depends on what demands the task makes of me.
     
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  5. Valentijn

    Valentijn Senior Member

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    Pacing helps me to avoid crashes, but 15 minute chunks of most physical activities would be way too much. It might be better to think in terms of 5-10 minutes of activity every 1-2 hours.

    If breaking it up doesn't help, then you're probably still doing too much. Though I wouldn't expect it to make my illness any less severe, but just prevent crashes.

    If having trouble with pacing, a heart-rate monitor can be a huge help. Ones with chest straps are cheap and reliable, but can be uncomfortable. Wrist units are comfortable and usually reliable, but expensive. Pulse oximeters are cheap and easy to use for spot checks when sitting or standing still, such as immediately after an activity, but not when moving around.

    If heart rate is getting too high (over 110 typically), then the activity wasn't appropriately paced. And if heart rate is staying high even after resting a while, it can be a good indication that it's a bad idea to do anything that day.
     
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  6. Skippa

    Skippa Anti-BS

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    I have certain things, such as a late afternoon crash/unavoidable sleepiness that occur whether or not I pace that day or even do sod all. And no matter what I eat, or eat sod all. Only drugs, erm, I mean supplements, can help with that.

    Eta: the general consensus in this thread is bad day's gonna happen, bad hours gonna happen, you can turn the steering wheel but the axel ain't connected!
     
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  7. lnester7

    lnester7 Seven

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    Yes, I have remitting relapsing type but I do also. I hit a wall also no matter how much I PACE. The only way I can expand my base is with exercise (I call it rehab, under my AT. I have been doing it for 10 years so I know how to do it safely). But is the only way I can expand what I can do is with mental and physical rehab. But sometimes I keep progressing and sometimes I hit a wall. But I have taken myself out of bed a lot so I know that this method really works for me.

    Note: I got my AT tested, and got a exercise doctor help me, so I can do it safely I do not recommend if you do not know what you are doing.
     
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  8. Jemima

    Jemima

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    What is AT?
     
  9. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member

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  10. MikeJackmin

    MikeJackmin Senior Member

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    I like the metaphor of the person with a poorly-running car, no mechanical training whatsoever, and a hammer is his only tool. He's not going to make the engine run better, but he can certainly make it run a lot worse.

    Pacing is like putting the hammer away. It won't fix anything, but it will stop you from injuring yourself further.

    I've been using a smartphone pedometer for years now, and there is an iron-clad relationship between my having two or three overactive days in a row, and having a bad week afterwards. The pedometer reads steps as a proxy for activity, and just a couple of hundred steps is enough to make a difference.

    There is, however, no obvious gain for being 'good' for weeks at a time. The only benefit I enjoy is not crashing. I presume that this might encourage improvement, if there is improvement to be had, but I don't seem to enjoy that option myself.
     
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  11. Mij

    Mij Senior Member

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    @taniaaust1 I'm going to try to answer your question. I find PREemptive resting works best for me, but it takes planning in advance and because I don't have any other responsibilities I can manage this. I do a lot resting even when I'm not feeling so bad, hard to do but I force myself. I won't get online or read either- earplugs and eye mask to relax and rest my brain.

    As MikeJackmin stated, I don't gain more energy from resting but I do prevent myself from experiencing PEM or feeling distressed.
     
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  12. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Hibernating

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    No, it always limits the amount I can do it in a day. At most, it makes me feel less bad for the next few days - which can be critical if you planned to do something in the next few days.
     
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  13. lnester7

    lnester7 Seven

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    AT= Anaerobic Threshold. When my HR reaches 115BPM.
     
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  14. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    nods I suspect that I maybe havent broke it down into small enough amounts in the past when I was a bit better and timing things more.. but that wouldnt work for me anyway as with my severe POTS changing postions is nasty for me eg getting up from a sitting or getting up from laying etc. so I try to do as little posteral changing as I can as that in itself seems to be a big strain on my body.

    I havent done that as from what Ive seen it wouldnt work well at all for me. I'd be having a lot of the time to sit right back down before Ive got to a point where I can stop whatever Im trying to do. eg Just getting up to put onto a pair of jeans put my heart rate into the middle of the highest level of exercise zone, the red zone on the graph at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerobic_exercise.

    that was the first and only time I've tried to take it to activities Im doing as that was very discouraging to see it in the red zone when I hadnt even finished putting the jeans on and that was the only thing I got up to do

    my heart rate often is highish even at rest (something only an bag of saline IV drip fixes). It can be in the tachycardia even at rest often or close to that
     
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  15. Valentijn

    Valentijn Senior Member

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    Yeah, it's what we should be doing - sit right back down! But life too often makes it impossible.

    It can still be worth looking at other activities though, especially in regards to breaking them down into several 5 minute tasks instead of one 15 minute task. It can be hard though, because walking into another room to sit down feels horribly inefficient :p
     
  16. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    I like this.

    I used to get gains for "being good" if done consistantly over very long term, now though it only avoids crashing like yourself.
     
  17. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    I doubt very much if I could be on my feet for 15mins at a time without now, my post was refering to times when I was much better several years ago.

    I got very dizzy when I was trying to film something for 7-9 mins last year and was shaking for being on my feet that long.

    I havent timed myself for a while.
     
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  18. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    same here, If I dont do that I burn out almost instantly when I go to do something. Its what allows me to do what I do
     
  19. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    I think Im probably at the point where I shouldnt be doing anything at all eg my BP can go to 197 in one minute of being on my feet and standing. Must of the time my body is really not doing well even in that first minute. Im really uncomfortable whenever Im on my feet. I dont even want to get out of bed any more and are always having to make myself do so.
     
  20. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    your post is an unusual one. Im wondering how you do mental rehab to get brain back? or do you mean something else by mental rehab?

    I'd love to improve my brain that is just as bad as not being able to be physically active. My brain causes me severe issues.
     

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