Dear Friends,

Welcome to the March update from Breathing Better, Living Well! 

dog with Valentine roseIt’s National Pulmonary Rehab Week – March 16-22, and today we’re going to talk about that often dreaded subject – Exercise. Now, before you say, “Ugh! There’s no way I can ever do that!” Take a nice, slow breath, sit back and see what we have to show you today. Remember, here at BBLW you’re among friends. We know you’ve got a lot to deal with, and we’re here to tell you that you can breathe better with the help of good solid information, the support of friends who share the same concerns, and the inspiring stories of those who have walked the same road.

Here's what's new on BBLW …

New videos about pulmonary rehab
Here are some especially good videos explaining pulmonary rehab, told by those who are doing it. These people have lung disease, just like you, and they’re amazing! Hear the story of the lady who lasted less than a minute the first time she was on the treadmill. If she could do it, so can you! But, don’t just listen to me – see for yourself by going to our basics page. Scroll down to "Videos" and click on "Pulmonary Rehab Part I" and "Pulmonary Rehab Part II."

Exercise Information
For more information about exercise and pulmonary rehabilitation, which includes not only exercise, but education and support, visit our basics page.

Ask the RT
By now, you probably all know that last month Helen Sorenson, RRT, visited our BBLW Community Forum and answered your questions. The Ask the RT forum is still up and will remain on the BBLW Community Forum. Our “Ask the RT” and “Ask Dr. Adams” forums are a valuable reference, abundant in expert information. If you know of anybody who is seeking answers about COPD or another chronic lung disease, tell them about our Q & A by forwarding the information to them.

Helen's Article
Simple Spirometry (lung function testing) written just for BBLW, will remain on our site, as well.

New Books in the BBLW Bookstore
There are more and more good books coming out about living well with a chronic disease, and we’re proud to add these three to our bookstore. Strong at the Broken Places: Voices of Illness, a Chorus of Hope is written by Richard M. Cohen who has Multiple Sclerosis and is a cancer survivor. (Richard Cohen is the husband of NBC’s Today Show anchor Meredith Vieira.) The other books are Beyond Casseroles: 505 Ways to Encourage a Chronically Ill Friend and Share The Care: How to Organize a Group to Care for Someone Who Is Seriously Ill. Share the Care is bargain priced at $4.99.

Welcome, John!
As promised, you can now get to know a little more about John, our newest moderator of the BBLW Team (and his Harley). Stop on in, take a walk though our community, and meet John, the rest of our fabulous team, and some of the others who enter our doors. We know you’re out there, many of you reading the board, lurking and learning and keeping to yourselves. And that’s just fine – we’re glad you’re here. But don’t be shy, we’d love to hear from you!

BBLW Village Gym
Speaking of exercise and our community, take a minute to stop on in at the gym, the BBLW Village Gym that is. Here you’ll find what we’re doing for exercise, what works for us, and how it’s going. No spandex tights allowed! Just bring yourself, your water bottle, the okay from your doc, and a positive attitude!

Sex and Intimacy with COPD
Even if you have COPD or another lung disease you can still live your life fully, and yes, that includes sex. Here are some links to information about intimacy and sex for people with pulmonary disorders. The links to this information are put out by the National Jewish Center (the leading lung authority) and are a permanent part of our site.

There’s a lot going on and we’re blogging away! Our BBLW moderators, Tim, Eileen, and Sandy, each have their own blogs. Tim is currently being considered for a research study and he’s been keeping us up on that. Very interesting! My blog, which is actually more like an article, is posted every two weeks on The Health Central Network. You can get to all these blogs from our home page. My most recent blogs have been about pulmonary rehab and breathing techniques. But if you’re in the mood for something a little different, you can read something else I wrote for Health Central, a two-part very personal, true story. The title is But… I Didn’t Order This Life.

See You on the Radio!
On Thursday night, March 20, at 9:00-9:30 pm, EST, I’ll be interviewed by Dr. Charlotte E. Thompson of the LifeSense Strategies show. We’ll be talking about breathing problems. You can get there from here —
Once you’re there, just click on the headphone icon corresponding with your type of internet connection. It will download and you can listen. If you open this newsletter after Thursday night, you should be able to find the interview in the archives on that site.

That’s about it for now. Stay in touch and keep on learning all you can to breathe better and live a full life. If you’re not already involved in Pulmonary Rehab, my friend, do give it some serious thought. You’ll feel better, and just maybe you’ll feel a little more like this lady here.

I’ll see you next month!



“You don’t get to choose how you’re going to die.
Or when. You can only decide how you’re going to live.
~~~ Joan Baez