It seems like almost every runner I know has, or has had, gut issues. It’s a topic that we’re used to talking about, it comes up quite often on our long runs and many times we joke around about it. The truth is, it’s real problem for many of us. Running causes a change in blood flow from the intestines to the muscles being used, and this can cause your tummy to be upset. There are few things you can do to improve the “trots” as they are called.
Tips for Avoiding Runner GI Issues
Having a good probiotic supplement – this helps the good organisms grow and get rid of the bad. It’s like having a small army of good guys in your gut to fight off the enemy, thus helping you feel much better. Probiotics also give your immune system a boost. Intestines hold 70-80% of the body’s immunity cells, so keeping the gut balanced is imperative to feeling good on your run. Probiotics also help improve the absorption of nutrients, so you get the most from what you’re eating. I use a brand called Florastor.
Keep A Food Log – Write down everything you eat and the time you ate it, to discover what foods you should avoid the night before, and morning of, a run. Many start by avoiding fiber and gluten (these seem to be big culprits).
Be Patient – When we first start running, gut issues are pretty common, but as you become a more seasoned athlete, your body adapts and the trots become less frequent — especially if you continue to use a probiotic and eat the right foods for your body.
Electrolytes – There is one theory that the trots are caused by an imbalance of electrolytes. I would be careful here, some electrolyte drinks are high in sugar and that can also be a gut trigger. I would start with something mild like this homemade electrolyte ( a no sugar added drink that is great for athletes ). Staying hydrated is extremely important. You don’t want to drink too much, though, as that can also be problematic for runners. A good way to tell if you’re drinking the right amount is to make sure your pee is pale yellow in color–not dark yellow and not clear, but pale yellow.
Avoid Artificial Sweeteners – I don’t use these myself, but have heard that many artificial sweeteners will cause stomach distress – going on a run after ingesting these can be a serious trigger for some.
Eat Small Meals If you are running less than 5 miles, try going out with an empty stomach, and anything over 5 try a smaller meals.
For more great tips visit these two sites:
Links- Avoiding Runners Trots by Run to the Finish
Links- Fueling the Runner, a Runner’s Nightmare by Runner’s World
Everyone is different, what works for you may not work for someone else, but I do know one thing for sure, there is no downside to taking Florastor Probiotic – it can only improve the way you feel and support the overall well being of your system.
Florastor is gluten free and vegetarian. It’s safe for babies as young as 2 months. My kids take it every day. I love it because I don’t have to refrigerate it like some brands, making it easy to throw in my bag and take on the go.
Since my kids don’t take tablets, I sprinkle it on their food. It is flavorless, they don’t even know they’re eating it. Although I might not recommend this recipe for someone with runners trots (due to it’s high fiber content), it is a great way to get kids to get their probiotics, and Florastor can be sprinkled right on top by twisting a capsule open.
- ¼ cup of brown bag popped corn
- 2 T. of melted Coconut Oil
- 1 T. Maple Syrup
- ¼ t. of Cayenne or Chili powder
- Sea Salt to taste
- 1 Florastor capsule
- Place ¼ cup of popping corn in a brown paper bag, fold over the top of the bag and microwave for about 3-5 minutes or until you hear the corn stop popping. Set the popcorn aside, and microwave the coconut oil, maple syrup and cayenne powder for about 35 seconds or until melted. Drizzle over the popped corn and mix throughly. Open your Florastor capsule and sprinkle over the popcorn, salt, and mix one more time. Enjoy!
What do you do to avoid GI issues on a run?
Have you used, or are you currently using a probiotic? What do think?
This post was sponsored by Floastor through Fitfluential. All opinions are my own.
I am not a doctor or health professional–always consult with a doctor when starting a running program