Weightlifting and IBS / Elevated Stress Levels

griffinmill

Pelican
I'm wondering if anybody could help with an ongoing issue I've had.

Anytime I go to the gym to work out, any routine invariably effects my stomach and makes me feel stressed. The symptoms subside if I stop going to the gym.

I am about 6ft and lean, about 154 pounds, 44 years of age. I never go to the gym to bulk up but to keep myself slim and toned. My usual routine involves three days per week, with a warm-up of thirty minutes on the treadmill followed by either: arm exercises, upper-body / chest exercises, or leg exercises.

I never push myself beyond weights I feel comfortable with.

My diet is okay-ish. I don't take any supplements. My protein intake is I'd imagine adequate.

My frequent symptoms include: queasy stomach (with the right side of my stomach aching and tender), some acid reflux, a burning feeling in my gut, bad dreams and restless sleep, and I would become stressed about small things. There are also periods where I need to pee more than usual.

I have had three anxiety attacks too. Though I can't be certain of the exact cause, these appeared in the past when I was hitting it hard at the gym.

What is going on? I have been to the doctors about this and I never get any answers.

I can elevate these symptoms by just not going to the gym, but then I feel like a lazy slug with a lowered libido.

Any help would be really appreciated. Thanks!
 
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get2choppaaa

Hummingbird
Orthodox
I'm wondering if anybody could help with an ongoing issue I've had.

Anytime I go to the gym to work out, any routine invariably effects my stomach and makes me feel stressed. The symptoms subside if I stop going to the gym.

I am about 6ft and lean, about 154 pounds, 44 years of age. I never go to the gym to bulk up but to keep myself slim and toned. My usual routine involves three days per week, with a warm-up of thirty minutes on the treadmill followed by either: arm exercises, upper-body / chest exercises, or leg exercises.

I never push myself beyond weights I feel comfortable with.

My diet is okay-ish. I don't take any supplements. My protein intake is I'd imagine adequate.

My frequent symptoms include: queasy stomach (with the right side of my stomach aching and tender), some acid reflux, a burning feeling in my gut, bad dreams and restless sleep, and I would become stressed about small things. There are also periods where I need to pee more than usual.

I have had three anxiety attacks too. Though I can't be certain of the exact cause, these appeared in the past when I was hitting it hard at the gym.

What is going on? I have been to the doctors about this and I never get any answers.

I can elevate these symptoms by just not going to the gym, but then I feel like a lazy slug with a lowered libido.

Any help would be really appreciated. Thanks!
Have you done blood work?

Also you need a low Fodmap diet

Look at the Verticle Diet.

At 6 foot 150 lbs you're not getting enough protein in 100 percent sure.
 

rainy

Pelican
Other Christian
That's odd. Exercise normally reduces anxiety.

Have to think some of this is mental. Although what's causing it, not sure.

I know glutamine on an empty stomach in the morning can help repair gut issues. Might give that a try.

Perhaps after exercising you're eating something which isn't reacting well?

If you ran at a park and did some squats/pushups, would you have the same after effect? If not, then it would appear your reaction is more related to the physical gym itself than exercise in general.
 

BasilSeal

Kingfisher
Trad Catholic
Gold Member
I am not an expert, but I would look into exercise induced lactic acidosis. It is the first thing that came to mind, when you described the symptoms.
 

travelz

 
Banned
Non-Christian
Perhaps you are not enjoying the environment in that particular gym?
May be seeing competitive behaviors, very buff big guys acting like they own the gym that stresses you out?
Does the gym get too crowded during the hours when you are there?
Is there bad air quality in the gym? (happens a lot).
Do you force yourself to do any exercise that you really hate, deep inside, like treadmill?

You can try changing gyms. Roomy, airy gyms, with big windows and good space between equipment are good, with good climate control.
Can also try changing exercise types, even learning a different kind of sport for a change, for a completely different challenge to the CNS and muscles.
If it's crowded you can try going only during uncrowded hours.
Generally what you describe is often linked to overtraining, but it doesn't seem like you overtrain (if you don't have elevated pulse, most likely not).
So you got to make sure you provide adequate recovery, which includes a lot of sleep and not just okay-ish but a good clean diet with no processed foods.
You can also try exercising twice or once a week instead of 3. One can get great results with once a week gym, the rest of the time they can do other exercises, including running sprints and plyometrics. Getting outdoor exercise, not just all-indoors, is important.

Do you do compound lifts? (isolation exercises aren't good things in general, in my humble opinion).
Do you do stretching? It's highly advisable to do good, long stretching sessions after workouts or on a separate day, aside from musculoskeletal benefits they do wonders for relaxation. Also, light exercise sessions are good to mix with heavy sessions, for better recovery.
 
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You describe more acid reflux than IBS, but you could have both.

If it is acid reflux, it maybe caused by H.Pylori bacteria or hiatal hernia, or stress. Hiatal hernia could be exacerbated with weight lifting. Since part of your stomach herniated into your esophagus and lifting that increase your intra-abdominal pressure will push more of you stomach through or the acid in you stomach. It's not that dramatic, but it will cause the symptoms you described.

Overall you described an anxious stressed person - Tall and skinny, cannot gain weight. In the mid forties when your testosterone start to drop. With dropping testosterone, cortisol, the stress hormone rises un-opposed. Frequent urination is probably non-bacterial prostatitis, again, another symptom of an anxious, sensitive person.

Take a break from lifting, do some yoga, go outdoors to get some sun and so some hiking. FODMAP diet is not a bad idea. Probiotics may not help directly, but is good for your gut health, and some studies showed that good gut bacterial flora helps with anxiety and depression. After a little break, start back lifting weights that don't strain your abs - do like curls, pull-ups.

Order the book - Healing back pain by Dr. John Sarno. Deals with mostly back pain, but it's really about mind-body connection.
 

Arturo80

Sparrow
Orthodox
Your exercise goals don't need a gym. You say you want to keep lean and toned, you could get all that far more efficiently from doing a home calisthenics routine.

I do burpees mixed in with kettbell and dumbbell at home every morning. Love it, no need to go to gyms, do it all in 40 mins in my living room. There's any number of YouTubers you can check that do routines you can follow, and modify to your tastes.

The only reason to go to gyms is if you want to lift heavy imho.

Beyond that, the standard McGym is a toxic environment of awful music, harsh lighting, often with douchey or thotish clientele.

I realise some gyms are cool, but they're the exception that proves the rule in my experience.
 

Batman_

Kingfisher
Try taking baking soda and see if that helps.

It's possible you're also overtraining. I typically only train for 30-45 min at most, any longer and I'm prone to nausea and depression/stress as well. Then again I lift heavy and do full body every day I train.
 
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