THE COLONEL - A stitch in time ...

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LIAM, 32, asks: Whenever I get on the treadmill, after about 10 minutes I have the most painful stitch and I’m left with no other option but to stop working out because of it! Is there any way of avoiding a stitch?

Of course, Fitness Guru at Xercise4Less, The Colonel has the answer: There are plenty of myths flying about on why we get stitches in the gym, and most of the time people tend to think their lack of fitness is to blame.

There is in fact no finite answer for why we get them, even the scientists haven’t been able to work it out. One theory is that a stitch happens when your stomach and other organs are bumping into each other when you run. Whatever the answer, there are ways to prevent the horrible achy pain.

Probably the most obvious solution is not to eat before you work out. Ideally you need to leave two-three hours after you eat before you go to the gym.

You need to keep your body hydrated before you work out, drink plenty of water before you work out, rather than leaving it until you’re in full swing, this is when the cramps will creep in.

It’s also a good idea to increase the level of intensity of your workout gradually.

You need to ease your body into it, warm up before you run for one-two minutes at a brisk walking pace.

If you strengthen your core muscles, (abs, back and pelvic muscles) you won’t get the cramps as much either.

Do this by lying on your back with your knees bent, push your hips off the ground whilst tightening your abs, and hold for three deep breaths.

Do this every time you work out and wave goodbye to those nasty cramps, don’t let them defeat you.