Endometriosis and Exercise

Hey my loves

I know first hand what it’s like to want to get out of the house and start moving your body, but feeling nervous that you’re going to make your symptoms worse and and start a flare. There are so many forms of exercise and in a “normal healthy world” every type isn’t suitable for every person, so try not to feel discouraged that you can’t force yourself into a type. I can’t tell you what is going to work for you, what I can do is highlight forms of exercise and why they would/wouldn’t suit a person with Endometriosis.

With Endometriosis being an inflammatory condition, our aim is to keep our inflammation levels right down and limit things we do that will cause an increase. We also want to be doing things that will assist the body with becoming un inflamed. Exercising for as little as 20 minutes a day can have anti inflammatory effects. Moving the body reduces oestrogen levels, as we know a huge driver of the condition is oestrogen dominance so doing things to reduce these levels are a god send to someone dealing with Endo.

Using exercise as a tool in your health plan can benefit you and your Endometriosis in many ways, just like how Endometriosis can affect us in many ways. The mood boosting affects exercise causes can be amazing to combat the anxiety and depression that is often caused by this condition. Endorphins are a group of hormones which are released into the brain and nervous system, endorphins can relieve pain, reduce stress and boost your mood. Exercise is a sure fire way to get a big endorphin release pumping round your body, exercise also stimulates parts of the brain that are struggling to fire during a depressive moment.

The types of Exercises best suited to you, depends on where you are at in your Endo Journey. Someone who is really in the depths of their health journey and perhaps struggling, would need to focus on lower intensity workouts. If this is you, I would suggest you utilise the following forms of exercise –

Walking

A great form of low impact, low intensity cardio. You are in control of the pace and can do this anywhere. An easy way to implement this into your life is to park further away from work and walk to/from the car into your building. You can make it a social outing and invite a friend fo a walk on the beach perhaps. This is great for endometriosis as you really are in control of what you do due to what you can manage that day. some days might be a 2k walk, others might be a 10k. Your in control!

Pilates

Another low impact exercise, pilates focuses on improving strength and flexibility and can assist in reducing pain caused from Endometriosis that targets your muscles.

Swimming

Not only will swimming encourage your body to strengthen up those muscles, if you live near natural bodies of water you can really connect with the earth. Natural, energetic grounding properties surging through your body after a swim in the ocean or a lake is a real thing!

Biking (may not be tolerated by someone dealing with pelvic floor issues)

Yoga

There are many different styles of yoga, including different paces and different difficulties. The breath-work element involved in yoga assists in calming the nervous system.

“Endorphins are a group of hormones which are released into the brain and nervous system, endorphins can relieve pain, reduce stress and boost your mood. Exercise is a sure fire way to get a big endorphin release pumping round your body, exercise also stimulates parts of the brain that are struggling to fire during a depressive moment.”

I would suggest that someone just starting their health journey, who feels as though they are struggling to avoid HIIT training, running and abdominal focussed exercises.

For someone who has been dealing with endometriosis for years, I would feel silly to tell you how to manage your condition as im sure you have navigated this area many times and now know what works for you. If however you have never tried to use exercise as a tool and are just starting now after years of dealing with endometriosis, I would suggest following the information above until you feel comfortable with your body to stray outside of that box and look at boxing, or heavy weight lifting etc.

It’s important to remember to be patient. I personally remember joining a gym and crying at many exercises that required me to use the muscles in the side of my thigh. I would get a sharp long strong stabbing pain all the way up my leg and into my pelvic floor area. I just balled my eyes out the first time I experienced it, my boyfriend at the time hid me in the corner while I just cried. Fast forward 5 years later and now I kill those exercises. Be patient and work with yourself not against it, in moments you feel discouraged know it’s ok. Get the tears out or vent out your anger and then just try something else!

Good luck endo angels

Love and light

A x

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