Stay Fit

Being physically fit will give you energy, help your kidneys maintain function and improve your overall health.

Even if you have many health problems, there are ways you can and should work out.


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1. Talk to your doctor

Check with your doctor to see what kind of exercise is right for you.

2. Eat well

Eat healthy meals. Nutritious food will give you energy and keep you feeling strong before and after you exercise.

3. Wear the right clothes and shoes

Choose loose, comfortable clothing when you exercise. Wear shoes that fit well, especially if you have diabetes. Blisters on your feet can be dangerous.

4. Warm up and stretch

Before exercising, warm up and do some light stretches for 5 to 10 minutes. Your muscles will thank you later!

5. Go slowly

When you begin your exercise program, go slowly. Gradually increase the intensity and length of your workout as you become more fit.



Benefits of regular exercise

If you make an effort to stay active, you’re likely to:

  • Sleep better
  • Improve your heart health
  • Lose weight
  • Maintain your kidney function
  • Lift your mood
  • Boost your energy levels
  • Reduce your stress
  • Have fun!

Choose a level of fitness that's right for you

Sit and be fit


Exercise is important for everyone. It can give you more energy, help you feel better and can even slow kidney disease down. Here are just some of the exercises you can do while sitting.


 Stretch. Simple stretches will help your blood flow and keep you feeling better all day.

  Sit on an exercise ball. Bouncing slightly will improve your balance and posture. Try lifting one leg at a time, extending your arms for balance.

  Do yoga. You can easily personalize a yoga routine to fit your needs. Physically and mentally, you’ll be on the road to higher energy levels soon.

  Lift light weights or use exercise bands. If standing is too hard, you can lift light weights while you are seated. Or, instead of weights, use exercise bands to build strength.

These exercises are adapted from Sit and Be Fit™, a chair exercise program. Call our nutrition and fitness services department at 206-720-3990 to learn more about a Sit and Be Fit program for you.

Moderately active


With the advice of your doctor, work toward 30 minutes of exercise, three days a week. This is enough to get you fit and keep you there, without overdoing it.


 Walk, walk, walk. Walking is good for your heart, mind and mood. You can even walk indoors! Take a friend — the time will pass more quickly and you’ll enjoy the company. If you’re a patient at Northwest Kidney Centers, contact our nutrition and fitness services department at 206-720-3990 for a free pedometer to track your steps. 

✓ Do some light gardening. Get outside, clean up your yard and count it as exercise! As you kneel, dig and pull weeds, you’ll be burning calories and building strength.

✓ Join a fitness center. Check out your local community fitness center — they often have special programs for people with medical issues. If you’re a patient at Northwest Kidney Centers, contact us at 206-720-3990 to see if you qualify for a free or reduced YMCA membership.



Extremely fit


If you’re already quite fit and you have your doctor’s go-ahead, then by all means, maintain a high level of activity. A workout that’s good for your heart is good for your kidneys.


 Go running. Running can relieve stress, boost your confidence and help you lose weight. Sign up for a race to encourage you to consistently train.

 Pump some iron. Strength training with moderate to heavy weights is OK, if you’ve done it in the past. Remember to warm up and stretch before you start.

✓ Jump rope. Keep a jump rope in the car to exercise on the go, during your breaks from work and on long car journeys.

 Do aerobics. Join a Zumba class or do step aerobics to a DVD.

 Ride your bike. Cycling is a great low-impact activity. It will improve your strength and stamina while you get from point A to point B.


We're there when you need us


For more information on nutrition, activity and exercise, contact our nutrition and fitness department at or call 206-720-3990.


Guests at our Kidney Health Fest practice simple exercises they can do anywhere.