Bloating after a workout
Gut Health, Lifestyle, Wellbeing

What causes post-workout bloating

Feelings of swelling and gas after a hard workout are more common than sufferers realise. The good news is that post-workout bloating isn’t permanent and often corrects on its own. If you are suffering from this post-workout bloating, there are a few tips and tricks that should help alleviate the symptoms.

There are many reasons why you may experience bloating during or after a workout, including:

  • The normal bodily process post-workout is to enter repair mode; this is a trigger for inflammation or bloating. Repair is vital for post work out recovery.
  • Often bloating is caused by dehydration. Lack of fluids encourages your stomach to compensate by retaining water, creating swelling. The best way to deal with this swelling is to drink more water. Conversely, too much water can trigger a condition in which your body dilutes its sodium content and causes your cells to retain water {hyponatremia)
  • “If you eat right before exercising, your body will struggle to multitask digesting food and sending blood to your working muscles,” Dr Stacie J. Stephenson, “Digestion can get sluggish and the microbes in your digestive tract may respond by releasing some gas, which can make you feel bloated.
  • Breathing too hard during a workout causes you to suck in a lot of Air.

“Instead of the air going straight to your lungs, it can make its way down into your digestive system,” Josh Schlottman, “When this happens, you’ll feel bloated and puffy.”


Treating bloating after a workout

While post-workout bloating is uncomfortable, the condition isn’t permanent. Exercise-induced dissension and inflammation tend to correct on without the need for intervention. However, if you’re looking for ways to relax your stomach and alleviate your symptoms, consider the following treatments:

  •  “Stick with simple carbs and proteins that are easier to digest,” Schlottman says. Pasta, eggs, and Greek yoghurt are all great choices.
  • Hydrating before and after a workout will help your body recover and restore natural fluid balance. Dr Matthew Olesiak “You’ll want to drink about 3 cups of water for every pound lost.”
  • .Avoid fizzy drinks that can sustain or increase the intensity of bloating. Fried foods could make you feel uncomfortable, and in general, it’s best to stick to the basics. Stay away from fatty, sugary, and fibrous foods.



The best way to manage bloating is to prevent it; this involves ensuring your body is ready for the work ahead. Eating 2–3 hours before your workout will fuel your body and allow the time required to digest the meal properly.

Drinking water 30–60 minutes before starting your workout will help you avoid feeling bloated. “If you drink water during your workout, take smaller sips. Forcing too much water too quickly can lead to bloating.”

Try regulating your breathing. Keep your breathing slow and steady while you exercise. Avoid gasping and inhaling too deeply. Olesiak says, “Taking a good postbiotic supplement can optimise digestion, helping to minimise post-workout bloating,”