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Do you struggle to maintain fitness while dealing with your IBS?

Does anybody else struggle to progress or maintain their fitness with IBS? I have trouble getting stronger and fitter and wonder if others have the same problem? If so, do you have any tips or have any sites/people online who have good info? Thanks.

  1. ,

    Yes, definitely.

    I've found that I can only do low impact workouts. I have stuck with yoga and I love it. It is super low impact and I feel amazing after every class. I follow "Yoga with Kassandra" on Youtube. It's great because it's free and I can do that classes at home. If I have to use the restroom in the middle, it's no big deal. I just pause and then resume.

    -Elizabeth (team member)

    1. Hey ,

      In addition to fatigue, another common problem with IBS patients is the inability to absorb nutrients properly. Personally, after years of tests and doctor's/hospital visits, I have found out that my digestive system processes food and drinks three times as quickly as a normal digestive system. This leaves less time for nutrient absorption, and therefore a lower nutrient absorption rate. This means you can consume the same amount of calories as a healthy gut, but unfortunately receive only a fraction of the nutrients. Your body needs these nutrients to grow/repair muscle and provide energy for even your easiest daily tasks. With a lack of energy from poor nutrient absorption, you are less likely to want to hop on a treadmill, or pick up your dumbbells throughout the day. When you do actually decide to pick up those weights, or go out for a run, because there is a lack of nutrients, your body will have a harder time keeping up with and recovering from strenuous workouts. The longer it takes you to recover, the longer it takes for you to build muscle, and ultimately maintain an active lifestyle.

      My best suggestion is to get yourself on a routine with small achievable goals that you can easily stick with at first, then work your way up to bigger goals. Diet and exercise are all about consistency, so the more consistent you are with your workouts (and IBS controlled diet), the more success you will have. Progress may be a bit slower, and also harder to maintain, but with some consistency and dedication you can put yourself on track to see progress and maintain/achieve your fitness goals, even with the limitations IBS has so graciously bestowed upon you.

      1. My only "fitness" regime consists of a walk every day. That is usually between about 2 and 4 miles but there are days when I just walk a little -for instance if I'm flaring up and don't want to go far from my toilet!
        The other thing involves weight-bearing and is a 6 month job to collect and process all my firewood for the following winter months. Those 2 things I think help me to keep generally fit enough, though sometimes I don't feel it. I don't do any structured exercises like the gym or anything.

        1. Wow, carrying firewood for 6 months seems like a good work out to me. As long as you are moving your body in some way, it's all good. -Elizabeth (team member)

      2. Yes, it's a good workout I suppose. Moving and keeping generally fit is a good idea for me as I'm getting older. Use it or lose it. There are people my age who are in a fix, and can no longer squat down or get up off the floor. I don't want that to happen. But sometimes I think high level exercise isn't so good for IBS-D. Though it might help constipation more?
        In any kind of flare up I can't do that, and can usually only go for a gentle walk once my gut gets a bit calmer.

        1. Same with me. In a flare, forget it. Walking is all I can manage, if that! -Elizabeth (team member)

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