How should I breathe while running?
This is a really common question. Many people have misconceptions about how to breathe when they are running. You should breathe through both your mouth and nose when you are running because your muscles need oxygen to keep moving and your nose simply can't deliver enough.
Make sure you're breathing more from your diaphragm or stomach and not from your chest, as chest breathing is far too shallow.
Deep stomach breathing allows you to take in more air which can also help prevent side stitches. The feeling of extending your stomach actually triggers lung expansion and therefore increases your oxygen intake. You should exhale through your mouth and try to focus on exhaling fully for this will remove more carbon dioxide and assist you achieve a deeper inhale.
How do you get rid of a side stitch?
A side stitch or a sharp pain on the lower edge of the rib cage can be a huge annoyance for runners. You may be able to remove the discomfort by gently pushing your fingers into the area where you're feeling the stitch.
To completely get rid of the side stitch, try altering your breathing pattern. Take a deep breath in as quickly as you can to force your diaphragm down. Hold your breath for a couple of seconds and then forcibly exhale through pursed lips.
If you get a cramp during your run you may want to try changing your breathing/striding pattern. If you always exhale when your right foot strikes the ground, try exhaling with the left foot strike. If all else fails, you may have to stop and walk briskly for a few seconds while concentrating on deep breathing. Continue running after the stitch goes away.