Learn how you can safely exercise and enjoy the benefits of increased physical activity! Click to go to a specific section, or keep scrolling down the page to view all the content.
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IRB # 421-21
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Normal Responses to Exercise
The Work Effort Scale describes the target range for how you should feel with exercise and activity.
|WORK EFFORT SCALE|
|6||Rest||How you feel when lying in bed or sitting in a chair relaxed. Little or no effort.|
|7||Very, Very Light|
|12||Target Range: How you should feel with exercise or activity.|
|17||Very Hard||How you felt with the hardest work you have ever done.Don't work this hard!|
|19||Very, Very Hard|
Make sure you stay in the Green Zones!
|Work Effort||During Exercise||Immediately After Exercise||The Day After Exercise|
|• Breathing harder
• Slight sweat
• Can feel muscles working
• Heart beating faster
|• Short recovery (4-7 minutes)
• Feel comfortable
• No aches or pains
• Could exercise again
|• Breathless but not speechless
• Muscles working hard
• Heart beating strongly
|• Short recovery (5-10 minutes)
• Feel that muscles have worked
• Alert and feeling recharged
|• Not more tired than usual
• Feeling of well-being
|• Feeling very breathless & speechless
|• Long recovery time (greater than 10 minutes)
• Muscles still tense
• Heart racing, pounding, fluttering
|• Feeling of no energy or exhausted (more than usual)
• Unable to complete your day-to-day activities
Understanding Your Lab Values
Review your latest blood cell counts (lab values) before exercise. If your platelets and/or hemoglobin are low, your exercise routine may need to be limited.
Platelets are blood cells that help your blood to clot and prevent spontaneous bleeding.
- If your platelets are low (less than 5,000) avoid exercise.
- Follow the general guidelines for platelet lab values when exercising (see table below).
- Check with your care team if you have any questions.
Hemoglobin is a type of blood cell that helps carry oxygen.
- If your hemoglobin is too low (less than 8), during exercise your body may not have enough oxygen.
- It is important to check with your healthcare team if your hemoglobin is less than 8.
- If you require a blood transfusion, do not exercise until the day after your blood transfusion.
General Exercise Guidelines for Platelet Lab Values
Use the table below to determine whether your exercise should be limited based on your platelet lab values.
|> 50,000||No limitations||No limitations||No limitations|
|30,000 - 50,000||No limitations||No resistance on bike||As tolerated, with light resistance bands only|
|21,000 - 30,000||No limitations||No resistance on bike||As tolerated, with light resistance bands only|
|11,000 - 20,000||No limitations||No biking||As tolerated, but NO resistance bands or weights|
|5,000 - 10,000||No limitations||No biking||Range of motion only|
|< 5,000||No limitations||No biking||No exercise|
Safety Tips to Avoid Injury
Follow these do's and don'ts for basic tips to maintain safe and satisfying physical activity.
- Exercise at a comfortable pace. Use the “talk test”.
- Have good fitting and comfortable shoes
- Have water available to stay hydrated
- Warm-up before exercise
- Cool-down after exercise
- Activities should be “joint friendly.” Adjust your activity when you have more joint pain and discomfort than usual, while still trying to stay active.
When in doubt, use the "TALK TEST"
When you are being active, just try talking.
A moderate level of activity is what we recommend,
where you can talk comfortably, but can't “sing.”
- Do not hold your breath while exercising
- Do not lift any weights that are too heavy, or use any resistance band that is too hard
- Stop exercise if you are not feeling well or are overly fatigued
How much physical activity do I need?
These recommendations come from the second edition of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. Experts developed these targets for amount of activity recommended based on the latest research showing how physical activity affects our health.
For more information, click the links below to some fact sheets (PDF files):