Gym exercise

Hi all,

So I’m still having a terrible time of this thing. I can’t sit in bed for long periods, I can’t watch any TV, no computer use, even reading books now makes me suffer. All I seem to be able to do is walk. So walk I do. Usually upwards of 6 miles a day. But i am stuck at night. So…

I was wondering what kinds of gym machines do you all find helpful? Any that are triggers? I tried jogging in place on the treadmill and it didn’t feel that great afterwards.

Any advice is appreciated!

Dizzily yours, Shazam

Hi, I feel you on the gym thing. Before I was diagnosed I was going to the gym often and making great progress. Now I am limited to only going during the day as their lights bother sometimes. I too have noticed that cardio tends to do me in. The elliptical machine is the one I used to use the most, is now off limits, or limited to only 10 minutes at a slow pace.

I personally love lifting weights and the last time I went to the gym I did only weights and had the most success. I like to do the leg press, ab twists, lateral pull down, leg curls, arm curls, etc. my gym has a circuit training area that works out your whole body so I tend to use that the most

what about swimming or yoga? i do both and feel fine

Do you find that yoga helps with the neck and upper back pain? I tend to get this lately during storms when the pressure changes

When I was at my worst, I swam. I had to take a meclizine and swim alone at 4:30 am. I eventually worked my way up to working out first on a stationary bike and then the elliptical. My vestibular rehab therapist taught my how to dance along my thresholds. I go until any one of my symptoms goes above 20% from where I was when I walked in. I slow down when things get bad, speed up when I’ve recovered. Now, I can swim miles in a full pool and run 6 miles on the elliptical. The first 20 minutes is always hard. Sometimes I have to give in early, but I keep going back. I used to wear sunglasses, a ball cap and earplugs and take meclizine. Often I hold on and close my eyes. The point is, keep trying. Dance the edge of your thresholds and push them inexorably back.

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yup, helps a lot! we tense the neck because of the dizziness so yoga helps relax. Try a slow flow and restorative yoga class, it is less intense but helps relax the body.


I have maintained a regular but heavily scaled back gym routine ever since I started with MAV. For me I try and do more exercises seated than standing or bending. That means a lot of machine work and riding on the bike.

The biggest issue for me is the gym is a huge open space with a lot of people moving and bright fluorescent lights overhead. It’s like a MAV nightmare. So I try and keep my workouts on the shorter side, usually 30-45 minutes.

I struggle with things like squats, step ups and other exercises that require changing my body position vertically. They are very challenging, so I’ll only do a few reps with low weight. The key with working out, as with anything, is to do it only to the point where you don’t exacerbate symptoms.

My suggestion is to find exercises that work for you that you can do easily, pick a less busy time to go, and keep your workouts short

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Hi Shazam
Treadmill wasn’t great for me either - I think it’s because you are moving AND the surface beneath you is moving and the balance system just can’t comprehend that as opposed to walking when you are moving but the surface beneath you is not moving. I could manage the stationery bike, rowing machine and some weight machines especially for lower body but I couldn’t manage free weights or floor mat exercises or anything that required a lot of head or upper body movement.

i have set up a mini gym in one of the vacant rooms. Adjustable rack that you can place your barbell so you can bench and use it as a squat rack. That room is small but I made it to work. It comes in 2 pieces so it doesn’t take up lot of space.

At least small is something your visual system can keep track of. I often wish I had horse blinders at the YMCA.

My YMCA is nothing compared to the near by Office Depot. I don’t know what they are trying to accomplish in there, it’s like 10x the fluorescents of any building I’ve ever been in.

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Our Y just replaced all the lighting with LED or Halogens or Spot Lights. I can’t tell. I think they’re trying to send a message to space that all peoples are welcome at the Gordon Family Y.

If my thresholds are even a bit twitchy I work out in a ball cap.

The lights thing made me laugh. IKEA and Bed Bath & Beyond are like being in hell with their ultra bright beaming everywhere lights.

My hair dresser is going to be switching from fluorescents to LEDs and I’m not too sure how I feel about it yet, since, I was thinking the ball cap idea but then it’d be as if I had a bowl haircut haha.

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Hi there. I started tai chi in recent weeks. It’s very early days, but it definitely does not trigger anything for me because it’s so slow moving.

I have a stepper and an exercise bike at home, but am not good at sticking at regular use. As my symptoms are worse in the mornings, I could do these at night if properly motivated.

All the best.

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Other DVDs (be careful of region)

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Just to add, I found basic tai chi very useful. It was especially good at getting rid of any ‘morning nausea’. It was also fun to learn and in a good way: distracting from symptoms.