By Linda DuVal
On World Multiple Sclerosis Day, May 25, 2011, Angela Holmes was diagnosed
with that disease.
“Sort of ironic, I think,” she said.
She knew that exercise was essential to keeping the disease at bay.
“I was an avid runner and I was devastated by the news. Because of the issues I
was having, I knew I couldn’t keep running, but I knew I had to work out to keep
the MS at bay. All the research I’d read said that exercise is crucial.”
So, when her family moved Water Valley South in 2012, she saw the UCHealth
Medical Fitness center “and I thought, ‘Oh cool, there’s gym right here and I can
work out before I go to work.’”
Her husband also was excited because the gym offered child care, “so he could
take the kids … that was a big selling point then.”
She gets up at 5:15 every morning to get her workout in when she can.
She thinks it makes a difference in how she feels every day.
“Last week, I was fighting a head cold so I didn’t go as much, and I could tell. It has
helped me keep my issues at bay, as best as they can be.”
Her UCHealth neurologist has encouraged her to work out and do as much as she
can, and gave her a prescription for it, which helps allay the cost.
For the most part, “I follow my own routine. I did meet with one of the personal
trainers and that helped. They have given me different things to try to help with
different issues I’ve acquired. I feel like I know all of them and they know me and I
feel like I can go up and ask a question if I need to.”
On a typical visit, she’ll do either the elliptical, the recumbent bike, the stair-
climber or the rowing machine.
“I love the rowing machine, because it gives me the same adrenaline rush that
running used to,” Holmes said.
She also does weight machines and core-strengthening exercises.
“I think the biggest thing is having the mind frame that you can do anything you
put your mind to, you just have to do it to the best of your ability. I don’t try to
base what I do on what other people are doing, though.
“It’s not a competition, unless maybe I’m competing with myself.”
Now that her children are old enough, they also go work out with their mom a
couple of times a week.
As a bonus, she’s made new friends at the gym.
“That keeps me going also,” she said. “I just love the camaraderie and friendships
I have acquired while working out there, the support the trainers give me – they
have even come on the walk for MS with me.
“I think that’s amazing.