Abdominal bloating

Not sure it belongs in nutrition per se, but I have no doubt it is nutrition related. Anyways… Every now and then I have severe stomach aches (upper right part behind lowest rib) due to abdominal bloating. I can’t pin down what causes it since when I eat the same things the day before it often doesn’t bother me at all. But last Sunday I got it again. Left home with some minor aches. Rode for 2 easy hours and when I got to the coast and had to do the stretch with the headwind and I had to put some power down the pain got excruciating. I couldn’t put out any power to speak off and it was a sufferfest to get back home ( practically had to breath like a woman in labor to keep the pain a bit in check). As soon as I get of the bike I’m fine in like 30 seconds, but when I bend over on the bike it hits me again in no time.

Any ideas how to go about tackling this? I read more fiber, less fiber, less coffee (and even more coffee), I had 1 beer the night before so I could try to ditch that :frowning: I could cut down on dairy (although I usually have no problems handling milk)… any other ideas would be very welcome.

I rode on Saturday afternoon for an hour with a decent amount of effort without any problem whatsoever (well sore legs and I forgot to fasten my handlebars and saddle). But Sunday morning … brrrr what a difference. So much NOT fun.

It’s now the day after and I’m fine… although I do feel some niggling in my right upper stomach (where the pain was yesterday). I have no pain (less than 1 on a scale of 10) but there’s still something not quite right.

This has some similarities to something ive experienced recently. Just to clarify though, is this only happening on the bike? If so, is it every time youre on the bike?

The key to this, like everything else nutrition related, will be to record (and tell us) as many factors and specifics as possible.

However, ultimately with something like this, you should probably consult your doctor first

The only solution is to write down ALL of it…
like to the minimal things you consume before the ride.
Also include everything a few hours before (if early ride, before bed).

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Have your doc rule out gallstones. Sounds like much more than bloating.

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With something like that (gallstones, liver, appendix, small intestine) I would expect (way) more pain even when not riding.

For some reason i think gallstones are a night thing, when the body functions shutdown when you sleep.
At least when i had my gallbladder i never had issues during the day…always at night and when sleeping.

Just on the bike itself. Has happend like 3 times this year (but this was the worst episode).

Do you eat things whilst riding that you wouldnt normally eat on a normal day?

See the doctor! I’ve had bloating over the years, it then progressed to the occasional sore stomach and finally more severe bloating and sore stomach more often. I finally saw the doc and a simple blood test triggered more tests which found bowel/colon cancer. Thankfully I’m sorted and stronger than ever after major surgery and chemotherapy but if I had saw the doc earlier the colon camera would have simply pulled it out. I’m only turning 45 at the end of the year and I think my symptoms started in my late 30s and I’ve heard subsequently of younger folk getting it but I stupidly dismissed it as ‘Im too young to get cancer, it must be something else’, like nutrition.


I ate what I eat on most if not all of my long rides “currant buns”. Low fat, full of carbs, easily packable and tasty. My appetite was fine and I drank like I usually drink (same stuff, same amount). I’m not sure but I remember having some flatulence before the pain began already (I clearly remember farting quite a lot in bed :-))

Well I am 55 and come from a family with heart problems (only one to pass 50 without surgery). But nothing came up at my last regular check-up but that has been a year ago. Heart was fine (ECG ergo test up till 400 watt), bloodwork was fine, even prostate (PSA) was fine.

Also 188 cm (ehm 6’2") 82 kilo, kinda lean (visible abs). Great health. resting heartrarte like 45 (even got a sub-40 morning heartrate a few months ago whilst in lockdown)

Still thanks for the warning. I will keep your warning in mind.

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I ate what I usually eat the day before my Sunday ride (I’m am man of habits).

For dinner I had some oven fries, with chicken liver (with onions and garlic). With a big salad (fennel/apple). For desert I had 2 pieces of chocolate. I had a snack (some chips) with a single can of beer (Grolsch bock beer if you insist). And I had some quark with cruesli before bed. I woke up, ate some overnight muesli with some powdered coffee, protein powder and milk, walked the dogs, pooped, got changed and started riding.

My point was:

If this is a recurring problem, then make sure you write the things, to the last detail (maybe brand if you know it) of everything you eat up to few hours before the ride.

My absolutely uneducated guess is some kind of food allergy.

Could be as simple as GERD. Maybe chew a couple antacids next time and see if it helps.

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I would definitely get some bloodwork done on gall bladder and pancreatic fucntion in general. Missus had something similar years ago… Let it go got full blown pancreatitis, midnight rush to the hospital. Had gall stones. I think that the location is the key indicator here. GERD or something food related would be more central and abdominal. Get to the doc on it.


Everybody is different. respectfully you should see a doctor. One thing is if you ask for a generic nutrition question but another one is if you ask about personal health.

I have abdominal bloating as well and abdominal pain. it could be a lot different things. again better to see a doctor

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Look into FODMAP. I’m pretty sure this is my issue. I’ve always had minor stomach issues but that last few months it just got worse and worse to the point it became debilitating. It seemed like everything I ate would cause massive bloating and always felt like I had to use the bathroom.

Stopped eating onions from my daily home made burrito bowl, no apples, and no fig newtons on the bike, no dairy and I’ve been feeling great for 4 days straight now

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does this FODMAP diet improve instantly (within a day) or do I have to wait for weeks?

I tried cutting down on some known troublemakers (milk, onions and (chicken) liver and the overnight oats)… and was fine the next day (didn’t dare to do another century just yet though, but still 70K without trouble). Now let’s see if I can keep it like that.

Yea my problems started disappearing overnight. Was kinda crazy.
Whenever I have wheat again is when the farts start rolling in lol

It seems the onions and garlic are the biggest troublemakers for most. I am now also doing the ‘Activia Challenge’ hopefully restoring some gut bacteria.

I’ve also wondered if my stomach issues were partially anxiety induced. Or maybe my stomach issues were contributing to the anxiety. Who knows, but im in a great place now