*Remember to check with your practitioner prior to starting an exercise regimen.
- Use “rhythmic breathing.” Count the number of steps you take while inhaling, and double the number of steps for exhalation. (Example: two steps, inhale; four steps, exhale.) Do not change the rhythm from inhalation to exhalation. With practice, you may find that a 1:3 rhythm is more comfortable than a 1:2. Use the rhythm that is most comfortable for you.
- Gradually increase your walking distance as you get stronger. Try to add a little more distance every week so you do not overextend yourself.
- Set reasonable goals and plan rest stops so you do not get overly tired.
- During inclement weather or at times of the year when it is uncomfortable to be outdoors, you can exercise in climate-controlled areas like shopping malls.
- Remember to go slowly; don’t rush, get stronger gradually, and most of all, enjoy yourself.
- If you are prescribed oxygen therapy, check with your practitioner about the correct amount to use while you’re walking.
- It may be easier to avoid talking while walking when first beginning your exercise program in order to conserve energy.
- Inhale through your nose and exhale through pursed lips. This can help slow down your breathing rate and improve the movement of old air out of your lungs and allows for more new air to get into the lungs.
- Exhale at least twice as long as you inhale. Don’t force the air out during exhalation.