Fighting It

Went for short swim this afternoon despite feeling absolutely c*** since getting up – aching limbs and feeling generally rotten.

Perked up a bit after swim, guess it will all catch up wth me tomorrow.

My question is - Is it better to ‘give in’ when we feel rough or is it better to ‘fight it.’

I find I feel better if I exercise when feeling shite as you have done. On the other hand sometimes I push it too far and struggle for days after. Not the most helpful response as there’s no hard and fast rule for everyone but I generally favour fighting it.

I don’t think of it as ‘giving in’, nor do I ‘fight it’. What I do is rest up when I feel rough and do stuff when I feel able. To refer to it as giving in suggests some sort of defeat and that’s not what my system is doing, it tells me to rest so I do. Likewise, it’s not fighting, it’s just doing what I can and maybe a bit more if it’s not going to have a detrimental effect.

On the days that I don’t feel like going to the gym but go anyway, it’s really worth the effort. I feel much better for having exercised.



give in and fight it are words i never use for a reason.

i will try to explain…

its all about mind games which usually have negative connotations but it is possible to play positive ones! fight it implies an winner and a loser. in a fight against ms i will lose cos its taken so much and continues to do so. so i have chosen not to enter that fight but instead accept whats happening and cope with the consequences as best as i can. if i am not participating then its impossible to get a result! give in is similar in that i know what activities exhaust me and i know what i am capable of so only stupidity will force me to go on and the suffer so i dont! theres a fine line between independence and stupidity but after crossing the line a few/several times you SHOULD learn!

am not being a smart a…just honest from one who crossed the line several times before she learned!


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hear hear val!

i was typing and so didnt see your reply!


Hi Ellie

I think I understand what Krakowian means but I just wouldn’t use that terminology. Not for myself anyway, I don’t think about it in those terms!

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hiya val

yes i understand too (i think!) and just trying to offer another way of looking at it. who knows what is right or wrong cos its different for us all!

hope u r doing ok!


I didn’t mean I was ‘fighting the m.s.’

What I meant was I was fighting the feeling of not really being well enough to go to exercise.

There are days when I feel really ill when all I want to do is rest and do nothing. However I struggle on trying to do what I’d planned for the day.

Is this sensible in the long run or should we just respond to what our bodies are telling us.


My answer before I read some of the other responses was “Yes”

In my opinion it can be better to BOTH “fight it” or “give in” depending on the circumstances. For me it is about trying to listen to my body and assessing the pros and cons of each course of action. The pros and cons can involve the impact on others (friends and family) I don’t always get it right but I reckon that there are benefits to be had from either approach so as you get better at choosing which way to go you can maximise the good stuff.

To address the way of thinking and semantics is to understand that by either course of action-you can be doing yourself a huge favour. Just try to learn from any mistakes.

Sorry if this is not the clear answer you wanted.

Good luck


For me, if doing some exercise is remotely feasible, it is generally a good idea. For sure, I will be tired later in the day/next day, but I don’t go to work any more, so that doesn’t matter much. I would rather feel fatigued but OK with exercise than sluggish and creaking without it. It’s finding the will-power to put that into practice that I struggle with, though!


It is good to get out and about - should it be for a stroll or a swim - helps the body and mind…

I whole heartedly follow the notion that excuses can come easy and one needs to fight the indulgence for apathy or laziness.

I remind myself that during those moments of ‘not feeling like it’ or ‘cannot be bothered’, if i force myself, i will feel ten times better afterwards.

but with this said, there is mental apathy and then there’s physical lethargy.

it is one thing to pride yourself on having adequate mental strength to go for it when ‘sitting this one out’ seems so attractive, but all is for nought, if you end up injuring or exhausting yourself.

everything in moderation and do not shy away from listening to your body and how you genuinely feel.

good luck

hiya again

have had a think re this and i realise i am now coming from a very disabled viewpoint. i couldnt attempt swimming for example on my own-i would need carers with me and the effort would be too much. so i have tried to recall what i used to do! i would do the activity with the understanding that there would be consequences of which would be varying so then the decision would be do i have the time to recover. (i was bringing up my 4 kids on my own and working part time for 2 years after diagnosis)


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Try a right good massage hun. Works wonders for my useless body!


Hi Krakowian - as others have said, I believe it’s important to listen to what your body is saying, but at the same time I’m a ‘fighter’ and don’t like having to ‘give in’ - and I’m using those terms as a kind of shorthand for how things are. I guess 3 years after diagnosis I’m still in the process of learning which option (‘fighting’ or ‘giving in’) is appropriate when - if that makes sense. For example, I aim to go swimming twice a week - but sometimes that doesn’t happen. It may be that I’m not up to doing anything on that particular day and need to rest, or maybe I can cope with a rest and then a short walk later in the day, instead of a swim; or maybe I need to just rest, depending on what else I need to do either that day or the following day.

It’s a bit like learning to walk a tight-rope I guess !!!