What Can Cause Rectal Bleeding During Exercise?

You may have heard the old saying that when it comes to exercise, no pain is no gain. Certain pains and conditions caused by exercise, such as rectal bleeding, are unpleasant but are easy to isolate the cause of and easy to treat. Here are some things you should avoid in order to avoid rectal bleeding during and after exercise.


The amount of weight you use during an exercise routine, including weight shifting in the body as well as using weights in a gym, may irritate the veins of the anal and rectal area, which can cause bleeding. Bleeding caused by hemorrhoids usually has a darker red color. Ensuring proper weight shifting techniques and decreasing the amounts of weights you use in the gym can help to prevent hemorrhoids induced from exercising.


Along the same lines as weight distribution, improper lifting techniques can lead to hemorrhoids and tearing of the sensitive skin of the anal and rectal regions. Improper lifting includes the way you lift the weights as well as the way you lift yourself when doing exercises such as sit-ups, push-ups, and abdominal crunches without the aid of exercise equipment.

Tight Clothing

Wearing tight clothing, including underwear, sweatpants and exercise shorts, may irritate the delicate skin of the rectum, leading to slight rectal bleeding during and after exercising. If you notice trace amounts of blood in the stool during a bowel movement, or on the toilet paper after a bowel movement when you've just finished exercising, look at the size of your gym pants and underwear and increase the size as needed.


Many people who exercise regularly often use nutritional supplements such a vitamins and minerals to ensure that their exercise regimen gives them the maximum effect. Many natural supplements in these sometimes high-potency vitamins and minerals can cause constipation. Straining to have a bowel movement, which almost always accompanies constipation, can cause hemorrhoids, which bleed from the rectum and outside the anus. Ensure that you drink enough fluids and follow a proper diet to avoid becoming constipated. If the dietary methods for treating constipation don't work, you may want to consider using laxatives, enemas and suppositories for a short term to relieve your constipation.

Underlying Conditions

Although exercise may help to alleviate the symptoms of underlying gastrointestinal conditions such as hemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis and Crohn's disease, extremely vigorous exercise can cause excessive flare-ups of these diseases, which often cause rectal bleeding. Control these digestive diseases the way you normally would while taking it easy on yourself during your exercise routine.

Treatment Options

Use a hemorrhoid treatment cream or suppository after every bowel movement for a few days to treat the swelling of the veins that caused the bleeding. Use moist toilet tissue for wiping after a bowel movement. If the bleeding hasn't stopped at the end of 1 week, schedule an appointment with your doctor.