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Old 07-22-2013, 01:07 AM
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Exercise and epilepsy


I am considering getting a treadmill, to lose weight since I am extremely over weight, I weigh 275lbs! I know it is terrible, and that's one of the reasons I am looking to lose weight I dislike stationary bikes for some reason.

Could exercising be dangerous to my health? I am not sure if this is related, but this is the note my doctor wrote when I was doing an EEG:

"Hyperventilation performed induces two episodes lasting approximately 5 seconds consisting of high amplitude generalized spike wave acivity in the 2.5 to 3cps range. There is no clear clinical accompaniment associated with this."

"This EEG obtained with the patient awake and drowsy is abnormal due to a buildup of generalized 3CPS spike-wave activity during hyperventilation. Which is indicative of a generalized epilepsy syndrome"

Does this mean exercising on a treadmill is dangerous? Usually, I will just do it when I get regular sleep, and fully awake so that might reduce the chance of me having a tonic clonic seizure on a treadmill. I am afraid that I might end up with brain damage or injuring myself so bad such as busting a tooth. I don't really mind scars or anything though.

What advice do you offer? I won't run or do an extreme huge incline. But I really need to lose weight, but I am still afraid of injury.
-

Just some information which will help, I was prescribed a generic version of keppra xr and I take two 500mg pills twice daily and I have only been on i for close to a month. I know this doesn't mean it has stopped my seizures, but I haven't had another one since the day after EEG and MRI. Usually they occur every few months.

Last edited by notime; 07-22-2013 at 01:12 AM.
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Old 07-22-2013, 08:50 AM
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By not exercising, that is what could be dangerous to your health. Exercise is definitely good for everybody, especially if one is overweight. Being overweight could bring on many more serious problems; Diabetes, heart disease, etc. So get that weight off. I think what the report meant is that the hyperventilating is what brought on the generalized spike wave. It is saying that while exercising, pace yourself in a manner where you don't hyperventilate and get overly tired. Start out slowly and build up your time on that treadmill. You don't even need to start out with any incline. Just start out with 10 minutes on the treadmill and slowly build your time and your endurance will come with it. If you have "auras", you will know when it's time to get off the treadmill.
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Old 07-22-2013, 09:10 AM
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I agree with Cint that right now the excess weight is most detrimental to your health.
I don't know how tall you are; ie. 275 lb on someone 5' 6" is a whole lot different than on someone who is 6' 6", but if you tend toward the shorter end of that spectrum, you qualify as dangerously obese and should not exercise without your family doctor's supervision. No matter what height you are, make sure to get a general work-up by your family doctor to make sure you are safe to exercise. You would also be wise to request the assistance of an ACE certified personal trainer, who can instruct you in starting a safe walking program. A personal trainer can teach you how to keep track of your heart rate and exertion level to ensure you remain safe.
Also, remember physical activity is only part of the battle to weight loss. The other battle is in the kitchen, and dealing with eating habits.
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Old 07-22-2013, 12:38 PM
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I don't have the money the money for a personal trainer or even a gym membership, but I have enough for a cheap treadmill and usually that is the best to lose weight. I guess I will risk having a seizure... Hopefully nothing will happen.

I don't have any auras or warnings of a seizure before they happen, well not that I am aware of. I usually don't remember, it's just like time freezes and I have a seizure while unaware so I don't think I have any warnings.
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Old 07-22-2013, 08:01 PM
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I used to walk a mile five times a week. I wouldn't walk fast or run, nothing fast enough that I'd start to loose my breath. I never had any problems with it. I lost a good bit of weight and kept it off doing this.

I had to stop because of back problems I was having and gained a lot of weight because I wasn't able to exercise. I got my back fixed and really need to start walking again. I'll start going 1/2 a mile a day and after a week or two I'll work myself up to a mile, that took about 20 minutes.

I'd start doing something like that. Don't over execrate yourself. If you start sweating bad or getting out of breath then stop. Start out slow and work your way up to what you want to do and you should be ok.

Keeping yourself on a good diet helps a lot. Try not eating fast food, junk food and those sort of things.
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Old 07-22-2013, 10:25 PM
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@masterjen

Yes, I am about 5'8" tall and I understand the consequences of being obese. I know that I have an increased risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, bad cholesterol, stroke, and many other medical problems

After being diagnosed with epilepsy and having to take medicine for it, I realize I hate medicine and need to get in shape at all costs even if I must risk falling on a treadmill. I will wear long clothes and so forth to prevent any scabs or whatever.

@valeriedl

I rarely eat out and I have been changing my diet and still I am unable to lose weight. I suffer from hypothyroidism, but my tsh is normal so I need to exercise. I know that diet plays a major role, but something isn't right since I am unable to lose weight and I assume it is because I rarely get any exercise.
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Old 07-23-2013, 11:49 AM
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What about workout dvds? Cheaper than a treadmill, and more variety. I mean, yeah, you may feel like a bit of a goober using them (I know I totally do lol), but I think it'd be more fun than "running to nowhere." Or if you're deadset on running for exercise, do you have a safe area that you can run? I always liked running outdoors a whole lot better than running on a treadmill... until my knees got all messed up, and I gained weight, and can't run anymore.... ANYHOO.

Also, don't neglect strength training. That's a very important part of losing weight. Cardio may burn fat, but strength training makes everything pretty. ALSO after you've built up a good cardio-base, switch over to doing high-intensity interval training a couple times a week instead of doing all steady-state cardio.

I wish you the best of luck, you can do it!
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Old 07-23-2013, 12:18 PM
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. . . and not only does strength training make things look good (by building muscles), more muscle means higher metabolism, and higher metabolism means more calories are burned even when you are not exercising.
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Old 07-23-2013, 12:48 PM
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Several years ago I was overweight, 240 pounds. I started walking 4 miles three times a week. I walked every place I needed to go too. I started losing weight. I had to buy new clothes every 3 months to a lower size.

You can also do a lot of housework. Watch what you eat!! Are you eating foods that will put on weight? I am going by the Glycemic Index Diet. You can Google it on the internet. It works.

I now have started going up in my weight department. I am going to start walking again.

I have Diabetes as well as Epilepsy. I suggest that you be tested for Diabetes. Diabetes causes seizures, as well.
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Old 07-23-2013, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by notime View Post:
I suffer from hypothyroidism, but my tsh is normal so I need to exercise. I know that diet plays a major role, but something isn't right since I am unable to lose weight and I assume it is because I rarely get any exercise.
Are you taking a thyroid medication in addition to the generic Keppra, or since it your TSH level is in the normal range, is the dr. not treating it with meds? Some of the anti-epileptic drug's can interfere with the thyroid and bring on hypothyroid. I've taken thyroid meds along with anti-epileptic drugs for years and some of the anti-epileptic drugs have altered my TSH level. If you're not able to lose weight and are not feeling right, it cold be your thyroid med needs to be adjusted again, or you may need to try a different anti-epileptic drug. Talk to your dr. about it.
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Old 07-23-2013, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Ruth View Post:

I have Diabetes as well as Epilepsy. I suggest that you be tested for Diabetes. Diabetes causes seizures, as well.
I also have Type 1 Diabetes as well as Epilepsy and have never had a seizure due to diabetes. Sometimes my insulin has dropped down to the 40's, but I just get light headed and shaky, so I know it is time for "a fix". I take insulin shots with every meal and at bedtime and first thing in the morning. I'm constantly having to check my insulin level and I try to exercise daily. And, as stated in my last post, I also have hypothyroid and have to keep any eye out for that.
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Old 07-23-2013, 04:44 PM
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If you are asking if the exercise could cause more seizures, then the answer is that it really depends on the person. For me, exercise has been great. Since I took up running and going to the gym 8 years ago, I went through the longest seizure free period of my life. Although my doc, says there is no relation, I don't think it was a coincidence.


So, ultimately, you'll have to try and see for yourself, but with regards to your weight and other health issues, I'd say definitely try it. Who knows, it may help on the seizure front too.
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Old 07-23-2013, 07:20 PM
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treat yourself right, MacDonalds is a definite trigger for me. They have sent me to the hospital more than once plus what everever I was doing to send me to get fast food.
give yourself a decent diet. We think it is the msg

The crap they make only gets worse, but it still gets to me. I have been all over the world and seen places with empty lines and seen MacDonalds with five lives lines back to the windows.
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Old 07-23-2013, 08:38 PM
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Hi notime,

You should not run at first. I walk, even though I have lost most of my weight. I still have 30 pounds to lose.

At first, the weight comes off very slowly. Be patient!! If you stick to a diet, it will come off.

You never risk your health to exercise. There are fun exercises on DVD's. Mine are Gilad's Bodies in Motion DVD's. They are good aerobics and are good for the heart.

Or, just walk around the neighborhood. You do not need a treadmill.
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Old 07-23-2013, 09:23 PM
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Notime,
As some of the others have mentioned, you don't necessarily need a treadmill to exercise & there are cheap ways to exercise & lose weight.

As Dances with pugs mentioned you can pick up cheap exercise videos/dvds which you can do in the privacy of your own home. Walking is also a really good form of exercise, you don't have to walk far just set yourself small goals eg 20mins a day then progress to longer walks as you feel up to it.
It might be good to set yourself a certain time to go out walking eg- during the summer time go earlier in the morning before it gets to hot.

I do not have a licence & have never learnt to drive, I have my seizures under control so I would be able to go for my licence if I chose to but I have no interest in driving.
Instead I prefer to walk, I walk everywhere & if the weather is nice I try to go for a 40 - 60 min walk each day. I have a lot of walking tracks near where I live so I alternate the way I go so it doesn't get boring. I do voluntary work, the place I volunteer at is in the next town which is only a 5 min drive. I could easily get a lift from my boss or coworkers or catch the bus but I prefer walking to my voluntary work which takes me roughly 45 mins.
I find with the walking it is the time when I do alot of my thinking, I tend to think to much so if I find I am to stressed or worried about something I will often grab my mp3 player & go for a walk. Listening to the music keeps my mind of things that are worrying me.
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