Tag Archives: side aches

Why Side Aches Are Such a Pain in the Abs

There’s no doubt that you’ve been walking or running along, and all of a sudden you get a stabbing sensation in your side that makes you stop in your tracks. Anyone that exercises has experienced a side ache, and anyone that’s had one wants to know how to avoid them.

While digestional cramping during a run can be caused by any number of things, including pre-run drinks or meals, side aches are caused by one thing: an insufficient warm up.

When you exercise, blood flow is shunted from your abdomen, where most of it usually hangs out, and is redirected to your exercising muscles which are usually your arms and legs. This shunting is called vasoconstriction, and when it is done too abruptly, that lack of blood can cause pain in your abdomen. Warming up allows your blood to slowly redistribute to your exercising muscles to avoid such a fast and painful stitch in your side.