Monday, May 9, 2011

TMI - It's Here to Stay

Good morning and happy Monday!

This morning I had my first official training run, gosh it was fun to mark it off the list, and now I start my plan to go caffeine free.  What?  Have I gone insane?  No and I'll explain.

I have been consulting my favorite physician, Dr. Google, about my bladder issues (overactive bladder, stress incontinence).  I'm concerned about running 13.1 miles and having to stop and use a porta-potty, or worse, not being able to make it to one.  I'm going to make some changes during the next few weeks to see if it helps the situation.  If I don't see any improvement, I'll be calling up a real doctor.  If I do see improvement, well, I might still call up a real doctor.   Time will tell. 

Up first is the plan to go caffeine free.  Now, this is very difficult for me because I LOVE coffee.  But I love running (without peeing) more than coffee so with that in mind, I embrace this plan.  Today I had two cups of regular coffee (my usual is at least 5) and then switched to decaf.  Decaf is fine, but not as lovely, so I don't see myself drinking much of it.  It's more to help with my habit of always having coffee on my desk.  Tomorrow I'll have two cups regular, but then Wednesday I will go down to one.  By Saturday or Sunday I plan to have zero.  Coffee is really all the caffeine that I consume these days, although I also love me some Diet Coke, but I hardly ever have it.  I can always buy some caff-free if I really want it.

Up second on the plan is to decrease the liquids I consume overall.  I drink a TON of water.  I have a water bottle that holds 26 ounces and I will easily fill it 5 times per day, more if I am up late.  I think I probably do it more out of habit than actual thirst and that makes my bladder work overtime.  Instead of mindlessly drinking all day long, I plan to try and tune into my body's signals and drink when I am thirsty.  Of course I still plan to get in my 48-64oz, but anything beyond that will only be when I'm absolutely thirsty.  Cutting back coffee will decrease the overall amount of fluids too.  I also plan to stop drinking anything past 7:00 p.m.  Hopefully this will help me sleep through the night without having to get up to pee!  Last night I was up 3 times!

Up third is to start practicing kegel exercises (sorry TMI).  Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles is important in my situation.  Having a large baby, coupled with being obese for several years has not done this area any favors.  So I will consciously make time for these exercises everyday, more than once a day.

I am sharing this on my blog because I know I'm not the only female runner who experiences these issues.  It's not fun, it's rather embarrassing, but it's also a fact of my life.  If I can help anyone else who might be in a similar situation, I'll go ahead with the TMI on my blog.  Hopefully no one is offended.


  1. You're not the only one with this issue. I started running in March and had the same problem. I attributed it to having four kids, and my age (I'll be 40 in July). Luckily, after the first month of running, the problem went away. I hope that it subsides for you too. Good luck!

  2. I'm having the same issues, but mine seem to manifest more when I get overheated during a run (an issue that's sure to worsen as summer progresses). I talked to my doctor and she also advised limiting caffeine and Kegel exercises. She also suggested running with a tampon to give my bladder more support. I haven't tried that one yet but may if the other two don't work!

    I've also been told that limiting fluid before a run is actually not a good idea. The opposite is supposedly true: stay hydrated through the day and take a good pee before a run.

    More TMI!!! But we gals need to stick together!

  3. You're not alone with the bathroom issues, although mine tend to be more of the pooping kind. I had my gallbladder out several years ago and have had bad digestion problems since -one of my biggest fears is having a bad diarrhea attack while racing, and a potty nowhere to be found!

  4. You're definitely not the only person I've ever heard talk about these issues!

    I'm the exact opposite though. I drink very little fluids....and end up blocked up. So while you're cutting back on fluids....I'm going to have to set an email reminder to tell me to drink!!!!! :-)