Your workout may involve a lot of toilet paper

Here’s something your trainer may not have told you: Exercise may make you poop (or not). Yup, that extra mile on the treadmill can do more than slim your waist. It also affects activity in your digestive tract. Many athletes feel the urge to stop their workouts and head to the loo when working out, especially when they’re running. Others find that working out slows their insides resulting in uncomfortable constipation. Help keep your insides balanced by sprinkling Regular Girl into your water bottle. Its soluble fiber and beneficial bacteria help food move through your intestines at just the right pace. That’s why this hot pink packet is a gym bag essential.

What you need to know about exercise and poop

  1. Your transit time may change. When you run, lift weights or stretch your body, it sends more blood to your muscles and less to your digestive tract. This may stimulate a change in your intestinal hormones which can speed up transit time. That is the amount of time it takes food to pass through your body.
  1. The runner’s trots may shorten your workout. Active sports such as running may jostle your intestines and encourage bowel activity. Many runners find they need to take a mid-run break to deal with some not-so-pleasant diarrhea (aka the runner’s trots).
  1. Constipation and bloating may make exercise painful. Exercise can lead to dehydration, especially if you’re not replenishing your fluids after a hot and sweaty workout. Dehydration may lead to uncomfortable constipation or bloating. Tackling the latest yoga pose can be downright impossible when your insides aren’t cooperating.

How to stay regular, even if you’re ramping up your workouts

  1. Know your insides. Being aware that exercise affects your digestive system is the first step. Keep tabs of your bowel movements, exercise routine and food consumption. This poop chart will help you know what to look for in the toilet bowl.
  1. Give your insides some TLC. Regular Girl’s soluble fiber and helpful probiotics support your digestive tract. It doesn’t cause any uncomfortable side effects while it helps food move through your system at the optimum rate. Keep Regular Girl in your purse or gym bag so you’re prepared for whatever your trainer throws at you.
  2. Avoid tummy triggers. Sugar-free candy and milk products trigger diarrhea in some athletes. Others suffer constipation after consuming red meats and cheese. Know what your body can handle pre- and post-workout and plan your meals accordingly.
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