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Guest Blog: An Important Step Before Exercise

By Special Guest Abby Cohen, Co-founder of Lift Pulmonary Rehab.

Many times, pulmonologists tell their patients with COPD and other respiratory conditions about the importance of exercise. It is absolutely true that exercise is important to help build endurance and enable people to live their lives, despite having COPD. However, there is something that is commonly overlooked as an important thing to address even before exercise: mental wellness.

Depression can accompany any chronic condition and COPD is no exception. If someone is overwhelmed by sadness or hopelessness, how can we expect him or her to be motivated to exercise? The first step is addressing those feelings. Similar to physical exercise and building endurance, exercising and training your mind can be just as important.

There are several options to improving mental wellness. Yoga, Breathing, and Meditation classes, such as those offered online by Lift Pulmonary Rehab, provide tools and guidance to learn to appreciate yourself, release judgment, and live in the moment. Talking to friends and family or others with COPD about how you’re feeling and the support you need can be liberating. You can also always talk to your doctor about anti-depressant options that are available.

Training your mind to release judgment and live in the present prepares you with the mental strength needed to successfully rebuild your physical endurance.

About Abby Cohen

Abby Cohen is the Co-Founder Lift Pulmonary Rehab. Lift is an online pulmonary rehab program designed to help people with COPD increase their endurance, reduce shortness of breath, and improve quality of life. Abby has worked in the respiratory field for over 6 years. She was named to the Forbes 2017 30 Under 30, Healthcare List. In 2015, Abby was selected for her work to exhibit at the first-ever White House Demo Day. Abby is also civically engaged serving as an Executive Board Member and chair of the Rising Leaders Committee for the St. Louis Chapter of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America and is Member of the Cranbrook Educational Community Innovation Advisory Committee. Abby graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering.

To find out more about the author, Abby Cohen, check out her company Lift Pulmonary Rehab.

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