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IBS And Exercise

It may be the absolute last thing that you want to do, but sticking to a regular exercise regimen can help you better manage your IBS symptoms. Not only does exercise help you manage your weight, decrease stress, and improve your mental outlook. It can also improve how the digestive system functions while simultaneously decreasing your IBS symptoms. Since there are different variations of IBS there is no one size fits all approach when it comes to fitness. There are specific guidelines that should be followed depending on your unique IBS symptoms.

General Guidelines

When managing IBS regardless of what type you should make sure that you know and understand your body and what contributes to and leads to symptoms becoming an issue for you. This will clue you into what exercises will be a good idea for you and what exercises you are going to want to pass on. For the majoring of IBS-D sufferers sticking to and following vigorous workout regimens increase the likelihood of symptoms such as diarrhea, and abdominal pain and cramping. Workouts that involve jumping movements, running, jogging, and sprinting are not as beneficial for you.

IBS-C sufferers may find that participating in activities that are more have a more moderate to high intensity can help with improving bowel movements and increasing regularity. The level of intensity for the workout should be adjusted and tailored for each person and their specific needs.


In the case of IBS-A symptoms cycle back and forth between IBS-D and IBS-C so there will need to be more flexible with fitness and exercise. Understanding how your IBS symptoms cycle can be helpful in determining how your workout regimen should be planned and followed. This means transitioning from higher intensity workouts to lower intensity workouts according to which IBS symptoms are predominant.

How Often You Should Workout

When managing IBS regardless of what type you should make sure that you know and understand your body and what contributes to and leads to symptoms becoming an issue for you. This will clue you into what exercises will be a good idea for you and what exercises you are going to want to pass on.

Best Workout For Your IBS Type


If you are an IBS-D sufferer chance are that you deal with issues such as diarrhea, abdominal cramping, gassiness, bloating, and abdominal distension. These are just a few of the symptoms that are most commonly associated with IBS-D. Common triggers that lead to these symptoms developing and becoming an issue can be diet, stress, and anxiety.

Exercise for you should focus on low-intensity cardio, and low volume weight-training. Vigorous high-intensity workout routines can increase stress on the body and therefore aggravate your symptoms. Choose exercises such as walking, hiking, swimming, pilates, and mild to moderate weight training. These styles of workouts are not too vigorous and thus do not cause too much stress on the body.



When it comes to IBS-C symptoms you may find that you deal with complications such as gassiness, bloating, abdominal distension, abdominal pain, and sluggish bowels. Similar to IBS-D many of these symptoms can be aggravated if there are issues with an improper diet, increased stress, anxiety or depression even.

If you have IBS-C following an exercise regimen that includes a balance moderate to high-intensity cardio and moderate to heavy weight training sessions can help to decrease symptoms while promoting regularity. Your unique exercise regimen will depend on your unique needs as well as what your body can and can not tolerate. Try workouts such as circuit-training, cycling, Tabata, interval training and moderate weight-training. This can wake up a slow and sluggish digestive system especially when combined with proper nutrition and recovery techniques.



For some, they may find that they deal with alternating bouts of IBS-D related symptoms as well as IBS-C related symptoms. Finding and creating a workout regimen for you may mean being flexible and adjusting your workout routine due to the symptoms that you are currently experiencing. So when you find that you are dealing with more IBS-C related it’s the perfect time to increase the intensity of your workout sessions. When you begin to notice more IBS-D related symptoms and issues becoming predominant taper back on the intensity of your workouts and transition to low, moderate intensity workouts.



Making sure that you are prioritizing recovery is another important and crucial piece to your exercise and fitness regimen. Aside from pre and post workout warm up and cool down. You should also have designated time where you are working to improve your mobility and flexibility through stretching and mobility work. Supporting your workout routine by implementing healthy balanced nutrition and consume meals that contain whole, minimally processed foods. Cutting back and decreasing the number of processed and refined foods you consume. Eating small, easy to digest meals. Eliminating food triggers, food intolerances, and food sensitivities. Most importantly making sure you are drinking adequate amounts of water on a daily basis. These habits work together to properly manage and decrease symptoms.


When it comes to getting a handle on your IBS symptoms you should first and as always consult your doctor for recommendations and guidelines. The next step should be tracking and understanding your unique type of IBS so that you understand exactly how your bowels work and can make decisions on what you need to improve.  You should then work on lifestyle modifications such as improving your nutrition and removing food intolerances, food triggers, and food sensitivities. This can be done through a low-fodmap diet or elimination diet. After these steps have been executed and fulfilled add in exercise as tolerated and as handled by your body slowly increasing as necessary. Weaving these different areas of health and wellness together can help you to manage your IBS symptoms and get relief.


About the Author

Hi, my name is Kathleen but you can call me Kat. I am an Anti-Aging Coach and I am super passionate about empowering women. I encourage women like you to take charge of their feminine health and anti-aging wellness. You can accomplish this holistically and naturally by creating healthy habits with your nutrition, fitness, wellness, and beauty. I create awareness and provide educational content here on my blog, as well as  YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram.

My intention is to provide you with education and awareness about women’s health, nutrition, fitness, beauty, wellness, and lifestyle. I primarily help women that are seeking holistic and natural solutions to common feminine health and wellness issues. From infertility to inflammatory acne, from endometriosis to minimalism. I aim to arm you with the tools necessary to speak up and speak out about your issues until you get the answers and solutions you need. If you want to learn more about how you can redefine your health click here and schedule a FREE Discovery session with me and get empowered!