6 "Embarrassing" Questions About Fitness That Have Def Crossed Your Mind, Answered By An Expert
Ever farted in pilates? Same, friend. It's simply a fact of life that, when you're exerting yourself and exercising, your body can sometimes do things that are, well, maybe a bit embarrassing. But before I really get into this, let me just say that all bodies do these things. We all fart, sweat, smell, ache — the whole nine, and much more. Bodies are amazing, beautiful machines. But yeah, they're also weird and gross sometimes. It's all good, but if you're worried about some bodily function in particular when you have a sweat session, your most "embarrassing" questions about working out are about to be answered — workout shame, be damned.
That's right, y'all. Vince Sant, fitness trainer and co-founder of the online platform V Shred, is here to get real with you about all the things that make you feel like going full ostrich and hiding your head in a pile of sweaty gym towels. If there's something keeping you from an exercise routine because you just feel too ashamed or nervous, consider shifting your perspective on it a little. The fear and reticence around working out is totally normal, but it's also something you can tackle and work through. Your body, mind, and spirit will be grateful you did, my friend.
Why do I pee a little sometimes when I work out?
Ever come back from a run and your undies are not only wet with sweat, but they seem to smell a little like pee, too? Don't worry, it happens!
According to Sant, this is particularly common for anyone who has had a child. It's called stress incontinence, and all that means is that you sometimes involuntarily leak out a little urine at unexpected times. "It can happen when you exercise, laugh, or even sneeze," Sant tells Elite Daily in an email.
He recommends doing two things to help with this issue: “Learn how to do kegels, and practice engaging your pelvic floor in pilates-based exercises. Both of these actions can help strengthen your pelvic floor and reduce the severity of your stress incontinence," Sant explains.
Why do I seem to sweat so much more than other people?
When I sweat really hard (which I always do in exercise classes), I tend to smell like peanut butter. No, I don't know why this happens, but it has certainly left me feeling a bit embarrassed in the past, especially in fitness classes, when I look over to someone else's yoga mat and they still seem to look as though they just received a professional blowout.
Sant says this is definitely normal, as sweating tendencies simply vary between people. “How much you sweat is really individual, and it doesn’t necessarily mean anything positive or negative about your exercising ability,” he explains. "Ultimately, it’s not a bad thing if you find yourself drenched in sweat while the person next to you on their machine seems to be relatively dry."
Why does running sometimes make me feel like I have to poop?
You're in the park, going for a nice, long, head-clearing run, and all of a sudden, you desperately need to drop a deuce. It's very annoying, yes, but it's also not an uncommon phenomenon, according to Sant. "You don’t necessarily have to have pre-existing digestive issues to get some unpleasant stomach symptoms on long runs," he explains. "It’s nothing to be embarrassed about, but there are things you can do to combat the unpleasant reality of urgent, frequent bathroom trips."
Sant suggests avoiding high-fiber foods a few days before a long run, as those will definitely make you poop. He also recommends staying well-hydrated, and avoiding caffeine, if possible.
What’s the best way to start exercising if I'm a total newbie?
Everyone's been there. Whether it's been weeks, months, or even years since you last had a consistent workout routine (or even worked out at all), don't sweat it (pun totally intended). According to Sant, starting a new workout routine can be as simple as putting one foot in front of the other — literally.
Yes, he's talking about walking, y'all. "It really is exercise," he tells Elite Daily. "Get a pedometer and take at least 10,000 ‘baby steps’ a day and start improving your fitness."
Why do I always fart during certain yoga poses?
We've all let one rip during child's pose, right? Again, it happens, and it's nothing at all to be embarrassed about. "Passing gas during the occasional downward dog is extremely common," Sant explains. "You’re bending and stretching, which massages the internal organs — which can sometimes stimulate your digestion."
Guys, there’s even a yoga pose called the "wind reliever," if that helps you feel more at ease about this. If you really want to steer clear of surprise farts during yoga, though, Sant recommends limiting any high-fiber snacks before you get onto your mat, and it might not be a bad idea to stretch a little ahead of time, too, to clear out any gas bubbles that may be lurking in your stomach.
How can I cope with feeling anxious at the gym?
Even if you love to work out, it's totally understandable to still feel a bit anxious about the whole thing, especially if you exercise at a public gym. According to Sant, some common reasons why you might feel anxious include not being sure what to do in your workout, comparing yourself to other people in the gym, feeling like people are judging you, and feeling like you don’t belong.
One way to deal with this, he suggests, is to ask your fellow fitness-loving friends how they feel about their own routines to see if you can find common ground and maybe snag a few tips from them. Sant also recommends tagging along with a friend for a workout to help you feel more comfortable about the experience.
Additionally, if it's your first day at the gym, Sant says that watching YouTube videos for each of the exercises you plan to do ahead of time can be really helpful, as can wearing workout clothes that you feel most comfortable and confident in.