For as long as I can remember I have suffered with IBS and intolerances to what feels like everything I consume! This went on for years, which caused me to suffer with anxiety having a massive effect on my life.
My anxiety led me to being so nervous to not even wanting to leave the house. I would drive everywhere, and the thought of getting on a plane to go anywhere would be too much. If someone mentioned going for a meal I would panic, and if I went I would want to make sure I could go straight home (due to the effects I would have after eating certain foods).
I could never pin point what it was that I was eating to cause me to suffer, it felt like everything. Where I suffered with anxiety this would also make my IBS worse, and I found myself going round in circles.
The lowfodmap diet has, and still is making a massive change to my life. From eliminating high fodmap foods my IBS has calmed down dramatically. Don’t get me wrong it IS NOT a cure; however to me it’s the next best thing. I still bloat, but this is less often and a lot less severe, I also now don’t have the anxiety like I suffered with relating to eating out, not knowing where the toilets are, and being ‘caught out’. I am now aware that if I eat certain foods there will be certain effects, but this is now my choice to eat these (rather than having no idea if what I’m eating will affect me or not).
Where does fitness come in?
It was around 5 years ago when I first signed up to a gym. I wanted to get fit for a special birthday and was determined to stick to a plan. I met with a personal trainer who sat down with me and went through my eating, and day to day routine. I explained how I suffered with IBS and for that reason would only eat a cereal bar whilst at work (as I was scared of eating anything else and possible experiencing embarrassing symptoms).
My trainer (understandable) wanted to change my eating throughout the day, and therefore wrote down the types of foods she wanted me to eat; this meant eating ‘properly’! I was so determined to stick to making a change that I introduced these foods into my everyday eating.
I was also advised of how it would be good for me to go the gym between 3-4 times per week. Which meant after work instead of me going straight home to my ‘safe’ place, I was making a change and pushing myself to go straight to the gym. Some days I would suffer with anxiety and couldn’t think of anything worse than going, but I knew to see a difference I had to go.
Without me even realising I was becoming addicted to going to the gym, and fitting in a healthier eating regime.
5 years later and I train around 5 times a week, incorporating weights and cardio. I tend to track my macros (number of grams of protein, carbohydrates and fats consumed) which change throughout the year dependent on my current goals.
I find when I’m suffering with bloating the gym can help my symptoms, as well as lowering my stress levels (which can contribute to IBS).
Overall eating healthy and living a healthier lifestyle has made me feel a lot less ‘sluggish’, more energised and keeps providing me with new goals to work towards.
Why start a blog?
My goal is to help show people also suffering that they are not alone. For years I felt isolated, and that no one knew ‘how I felt’, but from opening up and sharing my experiences with others it has made me realise how common IBS and intolerances actually are.
I have always been a massive foodie. Coming from an Italian family food is a massive part of my life. I enjoy hosting dinner parties, and trying out restaurants (yes I do have a restaurant list of places I want to visit!). This has now become a lot more challenging since following the fodmap diet. However I’m trying to make this more of a ‘fun’ challenge than a stressful one. Hopefully from blogging about my experiences I can also help others. x