(Trying to) Exercise with IBD

Exercise has always been a huge part of my life. I was a competitive swimmer before I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis and remained one until I physically couldn’t keep up anymore. The endorphins that come with exercising help my mental health more than anything.

Unfortunately, when you are ill, exercising is pretty impossible. It is also difficult when you are in pain, haven’t slept, can’t eat the nutrients you need, are lacking in energy, etc.

I have become in love with a health and fitness company that I follow on social media.

The company is not just about fitness, but rather focuses on improving your life so you love the skin you are in. It is about balance. So much is about showing your body you can do whatever you set your mind to. Pushing yourself is also a huge part of it all, as I continue to read more about it.

I often wonder how any of that applies to me. Meaning, I can’t be someone who just pushes themselves with the mentality of “no pain, no gain” because I could truly injure myself. The trial and error that comes with it can cause a hernia which would mean another surgery. I don’t have the energy to exercise a lot of the time so when most people will say “excuses don’t get results”- I find my excuses to be very valid. I also find that listening to my body when I cannot exercise to be the smart thing to do.

It is, however, frustrating that my body won’t allow me to do the kind of workouts that I want.

I would love to try different things and immerse myself in the community of this company (the name isn’t important right now) but because my body has been through so much with my inflammatory bowel disease, I worry about overdoing it.

I am not sure if other people feel similarly but if you do, it is something that would be a great topic for us to talk about together. Obviously, every person who suffers from Crohn’s Disease or ulcerative colitis (IBD) has a different physical situation but it is still comforting to know we aren’t alone. It is also nice to share some tips along the way. For example, as hard as it may be, I have learned that exercising before ingesting any nutrients is a recipe for disaster for me. Even doing my low key workouts. It has been a HUGE adjustment (I was never someone who even consumed food during the day) but it is something I have slowly become okay with. To an extent. :)

I also realize that if I am in pain (which is pretty daily) and don’t have the necessary medications to help me afterwards, I am going myself a huge disservice.

Do you ever feel this way? Can you relate in some way at all? Is exercising a positive for you mentally? Do you find yourself pushing yourself when you know it may not be the best thing? Do you often compare yourself to those who don’t have the physical challenges you do?

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