Exercising with hypothyroidism is often confusing. While there are those that say that exercising with hypothyroidism is good, many other disagree. Actually, exercise can have some wonderful benefits if you chose the correct types of exercise. Most normal types of exercise will cause more stress for your adrenal glads and further damage your thyroid so it is important to understand what types of exercises have been proven effective to add to your natural thyroid treatment plan.
Truth be told, doing the right types of exercises while following a proven hypothyroidism diet will get you better and faster results.
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The Wrong Kind of Hypothyroidism Exercise
Just so we are clear, most types of exercises are not good for you if you suffer from an under active thyroid and will only stress out your thyroid more.
Let’s look at how exercise is supposed to work…
Almost all exercise is catabolic by nature, meaning that the stress of it causes your body to break down its own tissue. And it’s not until after this exercise that your body’s natural repair processes start up and your body recovers from the stress with the goal of rebuilding itself stronger than before.
But you have to realize that when you are hypothyroid, your body cannot properly recover from stressful exercise. So while you are hitting the gym thinking that you’re doing some great hypothyroidism exercise, you are continuously breaking down your body even more while your body fails to rebuild itself.
Eventually, your body breaks down to the point that if you’re lucky, you just run out of gas and you just can’t muster enough energy to make it to the gym. But more often than not, you end up with some sort of injury that sidelines your gym efforts.
And this is actually quite common due to the calcification of soft tissues that is one of the common hypothyroidism symptoms. But that’s a topic of another article.
Studies have also shown that these poor choices of hypothyroidism exercise cause your body to stop producing T3 almost immediately. And if that’s not an indication of a problem, then I don’t know what is.
Most people fail to realize that hypothyroidism is a problem related to oxygen exchange in your body. When you do many of these excessively cardiovascular exercises you for your body to move even further from your goal of a healthy functioning thyroid. This doesn’t even only happen while you are actively exercising, but continues on even after you have stopped!
Here are some of the types of exercises you should never do:
It is ridiculous that there are so many people who recommend cardiovascular exercise as a “good” form of hypothyroid exercise. Because people who do cardio tend to push their limits, the if ten minutes is good, forty minutes is better mentality, that really makes the whole situation worse.
Most weight loss that is achieved through cardio exercise is from the breakdown of muscle tissue because your body has been forced into a catabolic state, which is not only stressful and a cause of inflamation in your body, but also contributes to hypothyroidism to begin with.
Cardio exercise causes a chronic stress response from your body which is extremely catabolic. You might lose some weight but it’s most likely going to be from the breakdown of muscle tissue. And this process is not only stressful and inflammatory to your body, but it also contributes to hypothyroidism.
Any Form of Intense Exercise
I’ve seen a major shift in the exercise world which has been brought around mostly because cardio exercise doesn’t get results. And I think a large part of the problem really stems from the fact that most people are hypothyroid to begin with.
Being hypothyroid you are already having problems storing sugar in your liver. Doing these intense workouts requires large quantities of sugar quickly. With no sugar available your body suffers. This again, stresses out your body leaving you unable to recover and even more hypothyroid in the end.
The Right Kind of Hypothyroidism Exercise
The right kind of hypothyroidism exercise is contradictory to the currently promoted exercise philosophy of no pain no gain, working harder to produces better results. With most people who suffer from thyroid insuficiency doing less in the right way is going to produce the best results.
Here I’m going to show you three types of exercises that are highly recommended for those with hypothyroidism. They work because they are not catabolic and do not create stress in your body which in turn harms your thyroid and adrenal glands.
These exercises promote healing, create an anabolic (oxygen rich) environment in your cells and facilitate tissue rebuilding.
The similarities between all three of these exercises that are good for hypothyroidism are:
They focus on proper breathing – people don’t breath as fully as they should. Breathing properly stimulates your oxidative energy system which triggers your parasympathetic nervous system and that is what promotes your body’s natural repair process.
None of these exercises are intense. They are designed, instead, to focus on your muscles. They balance your energy system, hormones and many other processes in your body that work behind the scenes and are the true directors of your over all health.
These good forms of exercising with hypothyroidism actually lower your stress levels and bad hormones that tend to damage your body.
These are the three exercises that will help your body to work the way it was intended. Chose one and perfect it. Feel better.
Qigong is another great type of hypothyroidism exercise. I understand that there are many differences between Tai Chi and Qigong, but for all intensive purposes I would say that they are similar in nature and the results that they provide.
and of course:
Yoga for hypothyroidism is one form of hypothyroidism exercise that you have to be a little more careful about. And that’s because there are many different forms and practices of yoga and not all are created equal.
You really want to stick with a less intensive form that focuses heavier on breathing and flexibility as opposed to many forms that are much more intense.
You can find a whole post dedicated to yoga exercises for hypothyroidism here.
Again, I cannot stress enough the importance of using the right kind of hypothyroidism exercise as part of your treatment for hypothyroidism. It can really help accelerate your results and health to new levels.