Why Autoimmune Strong Works
Why is exercise important for Autoimmune Strong members?
Exercise has been documented by numerous medical studies to have a profound positive impact on reducing the symptoms of Autoimmune Disorders, Fibromyalgia, Lyme Disease, Chronic Pain and Chronic Fatigue (see below for citations). Research proves that these individuals show remarkable improvement with both short and long-term movement & exercise programs. This includes:
- Enhanced overall physical and mental health (1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7)
- Reduced anxiety and depression (1, 3)
- Increased energy levels (6, 7)
- Decreased fatigue (6)
- Improved sleep (8)
- Reduction in pain (3, 6)
- Improvement in mood (3, 6, 7)
- Increased or restored range of joint motion, even in individuals with chronic arthritic conditions such as Rheumatoid Arthritis (2)
- Increased muscular strength and endurance, even in individuals with muscular or joint degeneration (5)
- General reduction in overall symptoms (3, 5, 6, 7)
Why is a specialized workout program like Autoimmune Strong necessary?
Unfortunately, despite the benefits listed above, exercise can be a double-edged sword for people with chronic conditions.
As you have just seen, research has demonstrated that exercise has many benefits for people with challenged immune and nervous systems.
However, research has also demonstrated that physical and psychological stress can aggravate the symptoms of an autoimmune disorder and other such chronic conditions. (9) Exercise produces elevated cortisol levels, which causes a kind of stress on the body. So, the challenge here is to exercise in a way that creates enough work to reap the benefits, without overworking the body, causing too much stress.
This is the goal of Autoimmune Strong- to provide a movement program that will allow its users to experience the benefits of exercise without stimulating a flare-up.
How exactly does Autoimmune Strong different from a traditional workout program?
The Autoimmune Strong program is different from a traditional workout program due to this focus on stress reduction on the body while exercising. There are many components to this program that contribute to managing physical stress levels, allowing Autoimmune Strong members to exercise in a way that is beneficial.
Pacing: Many exercise programs dictate how often you need to follow the protocol in order to see results. While Autoimmune Strong does have a recommended timeline for the exercise routines, is designed to go slowly, and you have the option to go at your own, slower pace. There is a significant focus on rest time and recuperation, so your body can adapt to each change before moving on.
Posture: Many exercise programs work only the biggest, most superficial muscles in the body. Autoimmune Strong does work those muscles, but doesn't focus on them. Instead, the focus is on deep structural muscles- to help relieve your physical discomfort by making sure you body's posture functions properly. Proper body posture and function contributes to pain reduction and movement fluidity.
Strength + Flexibility + Mobility: Most exercise programs focus only on strength. To fully relieve pain, strength must be combined with flexibility and mobility. And no, that doesn't mean doing a ton of yoga. Yoga is great, and is incorporated into this program, but Autoimmune Strong is rooted in resistance training techniques, and will teach you other important ways to gain flexibility and mobility in multiple ways.
Progression: Many exercise programs throw you into a tough workout and expect that your body will adapt over time. The Autoimmune Strong Movement Program does not- instead, it starts with very easy yet essential strength exercises, and these increase in difficulty slowly and over time, so as not to cause pain or kick start a flare.
Repetition: Constant repetition of the same exercises before progressing will help your body adapt to the movements and limit the amount of stress on the body. In the Autoimmune Strong workout routines, you will be repeating many of the same exercises over time.
Daily Routines: It is recommended that you do these exercises a little bit each day. This is essential for both gaining strength and movement adaptation, as well as reducing the impact of stress on your body.
Lifestyle Approach: Exercise is only one component needed in order to relieve pain and reduce the impact of stress on your body. Food and lifestyle habits also have an impact on controlling stress in the body. Autoimmune Strong is distinctive in its approach by combining movement, food and lifestyle modifications to help you transform your life.
6 Influence of Yoga and Aerobics Exercise on Fatigue, Pain and Psychosocial Status in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis