Top 5 Reasons You Feel Bloated After Running
Are you experiencing bloating after running? Do feeling gassy and weighed down often take away from the joys associated with running and being fit? You may be surprised to learn that bloating after running is very common but the reasons why you experience it are varied. Here are the top five reasons you may experience bloating after running.
What Is Bloating?
Bloating is a common gastrointestinal symptom that typically happens when the stomach has too much gas. It can cause a feeling of tightness or discomfort in the abdomen, and may even make the stomach look swollen or bloated.
When the human body digests food it breaks it down into small particles. Through a natural process called fermentation, naturally occurring bacteria in the digestive system break down these particles, producing gas as a byproduct. Normally, most of this gas is expelled through flatulence or belching. However, when too much gas builds up, it can cause a person to feel bloated.
One of the primary causes of bloating is intolerance to certain foods. Different people can have different types of food intolerances, so it is important to be aware of what your body can and cannot tolerate. Common food intolerances that can lead to bloating include dairy, wheat, fructose, and egg products.
Other reasons for bloating include eating too fast, eating large amounts of certain carbohydrates, drinking carbonated beverages, and stress. Eating too quickly can cause excessive amounts of air to be swallowed, which leads to increased gas build up in the stomach. Eating high amounts of carbohydrates can also lead to bloating because they need time to break down in the body, leading to fermentation and gas build up. Carbonated beverages are also known to cause bloating, as they contain carbon dioxide, a type of gas. Finally, stress can also lead to bloating because it can interfere with the body’s natural digestive process.
In some cases, bloating can be caused by a more serious condition such as irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, coeliac disease, or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). To diagnose and treat the underlying cause, it is best to visit your doctor. In most cases, however, bloating can be managed with dietary changes, exercise, and stress reduction.
So, if you ever experience bloated stomach, it could be a sign that your body needs some extra care. Whether the cause is dietary or emotional or something more serious, understanding what it is can help you find the right treatment.
Is It Common To Feel Bloated After A Run?
Yes, it is common to feel bloated after a run. There are several physical and psychological factors that could contribute to bloating after a run, including eating too soon, dehydration, and poor diet. Additionally, the digestive system naturally slows down during exercise, which can result in stomach bloating and discomfort.
Reasons You Feel Bloated After Running
1. Eating Too Close to Your Run
When you eat too close to your run, your body can experience issues with digestion while running. Your digestive system needs time to digest food in order to break down and absorb nutrients, but when you don’t give it that time and hit the pavement soon after, your body can become gassy and bloated. Make sure to leave two to three hours for your food to be digested before your next run.
2. Eating Too Much Before Exercising
It’s important to fuel your body with the right nutrients before heading out for your run, but eating too much can lead to bloating. Before an intense run or race, eat small, light meals or snacks consisting of lean proteins and filling complex carbs. If you’re feeling low on energy while running, try eating a banana or a small piece of fruit.
3. Improper Hydration
Many runners think they have to drink a ton of water right before or during their run, which can lead to intestinal discomfort, gas and bloating. Make sure to drink eight to 10 ounces of water before your run and stay hydrated with two to four ounces of fluids every 20 minutes during your run.
4. Eating Unhealthy Foods
Most of us crave high-fat and sugary foods during workouts, but unhealthy foods can bring on more than just cravings. Eating overly processed, greasy and sugary foods can make you feel weighed down and uncomfortable before and after your run. Fill up on whole, nutritious foods that are low in fat and sugar to fuel your run the best.
5. Eating Allergens
If you find yourself bloated after running, think of what you’ve eaten recently and if you have any food allergies. It’s possible you’re eating something that causes your digestive system to become inflamed and have a difficult time breaking down what you’ve eaten. Try to avoid foods or drinks that contain wheat, dairy, soy, peanuts or shellfish.
How Long does Bloating Last After Running?
The length of time bloating lasts after running can vary depending on the individual. Some people may experience bloating for several hours after running, while others may experience it for up to a day or two. To reduce the length and intensity of bloating after running, it is recommended to drink plenty of water, practice proper breathing techniques, and wear loose-fitting clothing during exercise.
Though bloating after running is common and inevitable sometimes, understanding why it may happen will help you take steps to prevent it in the future. Remember to drink the right amount of water, eat well-balanced snacks or meals before exercise and pay attention to the foods you’re eating that may cause gastrointestinal distress. Once you start doing this, you’ll be feeling light and comfortable again in no time.