A Year of Growth – Week 21 – The Not So Friendly Hobbies

In week 20’s post I talked about a few of the things that I love to do when I’m in a flare, or I guess you could say, the things that I like to do when I don’t want to cause a flare… and that’s all very well but let’s not forget about all the things we like to do that ARE NOT “chronic illness friendly”. After all, this illness doesn’t define me, I wasn’t always sick and yes, some of my favourite things to do are not always the healthy or most appropriate option…


There is absolutely no denying that something as physically intensive as dance is ALWAYS going to be bad idea for someone with chronic illness. That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be done… it does however mean that it needs to be carefully monitored. Varying the styles worked on in lessons means there is a mixture of high intensity and low intensity work and gives time to relax and wind down. It’s also great to be honest with the teacher, or to simply sit out on a particularly low energy or high pain day.

For me, giving up dance is not really an option. There were a few years where I didn’t dance; I’d moved to a new city, I had an injury that meant my old style (jazz) wasn’t on the cards anymore and my chronic fatigue was just starting to rear it’s head. Now that I’m in a routine and fairly well practiced at managing my condition it’s an awesome way to remember that I’m still the same me I always was.

Bush Walks:

This one’s a little harder to manage, often it’s not until half way through the walk (when home is either a long way back or a long way forward) that you realise you’re in too deep. It’s a catch 22, sometimes all you need is to breath in that fresh forest air, it’s an anti-depressant, a calming agent and so so important to mental well-being. If only it weren’t so detrimental to illness…

More often than not a bush walk will induce a flare for me, usually, I know damn well it’s coming and if I get in to bed immediately after finishing the walk and really properly sleep I can avoid most of the flare symptoms. Of course, telling yourself to get a good sleep doesn’t always go to plan and sometimes, getting straight into bed simply isn’t an option. On those occasions it’d be rare that I didn’t suffer for the following few days.

Sometimes, what’s best for your mind and what’s best for your body don’t align. That’s okay, it’s how we balance the two that makes the difference.

What do you insist on doing that your illness disagrees with? and how do you manage it so that it isn’t completely detrimental and sending you backwards? Share your tips and tricks in the comments!!


This post is Part 21 of 52 in the series – A Year of Growth.

The series is a celebration of the first anniversary of The Truth About M.E and is designed to help me grow through my illness throughout my second year of blogging. I look forward to having you along for the journey! 

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