Embarrassing Gym Issue: Have You Ever Tooted During A Workout?

by TaylorR

I’m not going to lie, I have really enjoyed putting together this series on embarrassing gym issues!

If you’re new to the blog, for the past few weeks I’ve been sharing the most common gym issues that we are embarrassed by… inlcuding the whys and the hows on dealing with’em.

If you missed out:

Do you pee your pants when you workout?

Do you experience crotch sweat?

And today we’re talking the poof.

You know, the thing women are “not supposed to do”.

leg-raise-toot

We All Toot!

Toot, poof, puff, f__t, whatever you want to call it.

I haven’t met a single person that has never tooted during a workout.

Now before we go any further…

Yes, I prefer tooted.

I don’t like the word fart (I was raised to think girls don’t use this word) and you and I are too good of friends now to say to each other, passing gas or flatulence.

So I am going to stick to toot. Work for you?

I understand this isn’t a topic regularly talked about. It’s like other embarrassing issues: we all act as if it never happens to us and act surprised when it occurs to others around us.

Let’s face it… we toot. Every single person (and every single animal… I wonder, do bugs toot?).

And when you combine jumping, squatting, crunching, running and whatever else you do during a workout, you’re setting yourself up for a tootiful experience… and sometimes more severe GI embarrassments.

Wringing Out A Rag

The occasional toot during a squat or sit-up is a pretty easy concept:

The increased movements during these moves doesn’t cause gas, they simply helps to dislodge it. Thus, allowing it to pass easier.

Think plunger to a toilet…

Wow, I’m keeping it classy today.

Stay Classy Today

When doing moves like leg raises, sit-ups, or other ab targeted moves your chances of public release is increased since these movements add pressure to the gut.

Almost like wringing out a towel to squeeze out excess water.

Cloth_Napkins-5325

But sometimes it starts with a toot and leads to more…

Exercise can also help speed up a bowel movement due to increased blood flow and muscular activity. Remember it’s muscles that allow your food to pass in the first place!

Runners Have Problems Too

If you’re a runner (really any distance, no matter the speed, you are a runner) then you are nodding in agreement when I say…

Runners know exercise induced GI issues more than anyone.

Heck, even London Marathoner, Paula Radcliffe, had to stop with just 4 miles left to go to the bathroom on the side of the road… and she still won!

According to a study published in the International SportsMed Journal, 30-83% of runners experience GI issues. That includes diarrhea, cramps and of course… gas.

Bathroom

The Real Causes Of Exercise Induced Gas/GI

  • Jostling the organs from bouncing up and down/
  • Decreased blood flow to the intestines during intense exercise and cardio.
  • Changes in intestinal hormone secretion (see below).
  • Pre workout anxiety (I had a friend that when ever she was nervous, she was extremely gassy… poor thing.
  • Increased speed in which food passes through the intestines.

Exercise And Your Stomach Hormones

Okay, I know that sounds far too boring but stay with me…

hormones digestive

When we think of hormones, we think of what?

Estrogen and testosterone most of the time.

Well, believe it or not there are tons of different hormones that help the body to run efficiently.

And for today’s point… I quickly want to talk intestinal hormones.

Hormones which tell the digestive track how to behave… when to speed up, slow down and everything in between.

Research has shown that exercise such as cycling, running and other cardio based forms of movement can promote an increased amount production of these digestive hormones telling your stomach to digest. I’m I’m talking… Digest NOW!

Isn’t it funny that your body has no qualms telling you when you need to “go” or toot, no matter where you are or what you’re doing.

I don’t want to get too into the science of it all, but for those fellow science lovers out there… gastrin, secretin and motilin are the hormones affected most. And yes, of course all can lead to gas and more.

Zenful Tooting

Young woman doing yoga outdoors

The last type of exercise induced toot I want to cover is during yoga.

Funny story…

For the longest time Dan refused to go to a yoga class.He was content with his yoga DVDs in our living room. Finally, one day I told him that if he really wanted to learn more and progress with his yoga, he needed to go to an actual class. He needed to get real training and learn more than what was on that single DVD.

His response?

He was nervous to go because he had heard that people fart (his words not mine) during yoga and he wasn’t sure he would be able to keep a straight face.

Oh goodness… all men have a little boy forever in them, right?

Luckily, he got over this fear and ended up loving yoga classes… and yes, there were even toots from time to time in his class. And no, he didn’t bust out laughing (at least out loud).

When it comes to yoga… you’re moving, twisting and relaxing muscles.

Those three combined means that the chances of something being let go is likely.

What I love about yoga is that this is understood and therefore this is the place of least embarrassment.

Our studio always burns incense at the end of class, which of course we laugh that they are trying to cover up everyone’s… well, you know.

How To Decrease Chances Of Toots

Now you know what causes the embarrassment, but what can you do to try to avoid it happening to you?

Here are a few suggestions…

  • Avoid high fiber foods prior to your workout.
  • Avoid foods such as beans, broccoli, dairy and garlic… all of which are known to increase gas.
  • Try to schedule your workout to be after you go to the bathroom.
  • Avoid supplements and sugar-free foods that contain sugar alcohols, these are VERY toot inducing foods (just take my word for it).
  • Work on “pinching a penny” to strengthen your muscles to hold it in.
  • Listen to loud music… if you don’t hear it, it didn’t happen, right?

Most importantly, realize that it happens. If it hasn’t ever happened to you… stop lying to yourself ;)

Brush it off and keep going with your workout!

Tell me an embarrassing story… it doesn’t have to be about tooting!

I have far too many embarrassing stories… but this is a good one.

When I was in college and Dan and I were just kind of new, he was visiting me.

I got up in the middle of the night to go to the rest room and when I crawled back into bed, I didn’t realize that Dan and slipped off the bed and was hiding.

Suddenly, he jumped up and yelled “BOO!” (or something along those lines).

Immediately, I screamed and let out a HUGE toot. I started laughing and told him he scared the toot right out of me.

We still laugh about it, almost 10 years later.

 

  • Heather

    I love your face in that picture :)

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      It was a fun photo shoot for sure!

  • http://www.TheTinyTerror.com Amy Lauren

    I love that picture of you doing the leg lifts and the caption… ;). This happens to me all the time but when you’re behind the speedier person on the track, it’s not as embarrassing, haha! One of my marathon training buddies last summer would actually go to the other side of the street and then he’d come back and tell us he was sparing us from what he had for dinner the night before. Certain yoga poses seem to induce toots, so I can see Dan’s embarrassment factor there. It’s not so bad in classes where there’s music.

    For me, it was more embarrassing being away from home at college and having to deal with bodily functions and daily activities around roommates. You hardly knew the roommate and had to adjust to living with a new person and other boundaries (Do you always take clothes in the bathroom to change, etc?) , and then throw embarrassing things like this in there- no wonder college freshmen are so stressed.

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      That is so true! I had my own bathroom that I found hidden in our dorm building so that I could do my business without others around! lol.

  • Sheena

    That story is hilarious!! And one I can definitely relate to from the beginning of my relationship :D Last night actually my boyfriend and I went for a jog with some friends and near the end of the run he fell back a bit and whispers to me “you didn’t happen to bring any doggie doo bags with you? I might have an emergency situation here” of course he had a big grin on his face, I laughed so hard I already had to pee a bit I almost peed myself right there! I had to stop and laugh it out then sprint to catch up :D

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      Bahaha, that’s hilarious! I have a feeling we would all get along quite well!

  • http://thefitfork.com Jennifer F

    OMG, I am so laughing — too funny, but informative! I don’t have a funny toot story, but I do have the time that I went to the gym and unknowingly had a pair of undies static clung to the back of my hoodie that just came out of the dryer.

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      Haha, that’s awesome! Something clean to change into when the workout was over!

  • http://www.katielookingforward.com Katie

    Prior to being a yoga sculpt instructor there was another older woman who taught yoga classes, she told students that it was perfectly natural to pass gas and it was like a bomb going off, people were farting everywhere! It probably didn’t help that the lights were off. Now as an instructor I have definitely passed gas while teaching, I usually ignore it and keep going, occasionally I’ll hear another student do the same. it happens, move on! But seriously that one day, it was not okay, I think people were trying to force the toots just so they “fit in” to the class.

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      OMG, that is too funny!

  • http://fitknitchick.com Tamara

    Even worse than doing it yourself? Having a client toot while you’re working with them. And having it be gaggingly smelly. Do you ignore?

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      Oh my, that would be tough! I’ve had that happen as well, and trying to keep a professional face is quite a challenge!

  • http://girlgoneveggie.com Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie

    This has definitely happened to me before during workouts. I’m loving this series!

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      Haha, I am glad!

  • Toni Prather

    Love it!!!

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      Haha, thanks for commenting! :)

  • http://itzlinz.com Linz @ Itz Linz

    lol!!!!!!!!!!! thanks for this

    • http://www.fitwomensweekly.com TaylorR

      Haha, any time!

  • Pingback: Friday Finisher 7/25/14 | Strength and Sunshine

  • http://thefitty.com Linda @ Fit Fed and Happy

    Yoga class only gets real when someone toots.

    I totally feel you.

Previous post:

Next post: