An old high school friend has been hired to come up with some ideas for t-shirts for an upcoming half marathon and marathon. Knowing that I run, she asked me if I'd answer some questions for her. One of the first was if there were any things that all runners discuss or things common to long distance running. "Oh that's easy, I replied. We talk about shitting our pants a lot." She laughed and I attempted an explanation.
It's true. We really do talk about defecating far too much. Fortunately, I have never shit my pants during a race (and purposely rise and eat at least two hours before leaving the house for a long run so that I can clear out the system) but I've known several friends who have had a few accidents. I can think of nothing more miserable than running with "mud butt". One friend in particular had several accidents and we came to refer to "shitting one's pants" by her first name as a bit of a tribute.
The body just doesn't particularly care for bouncing up and down for a couple hours. Add the food or carbohydrate gels necessary for running long distances, the water, and sport drinks, and the tummy can get a little upset. Running has been known to cause The Runs or at the very least, some vomiting. Throw in menstrual cycles for the chicks and you start to understand why there are hundreds of port-o-johns at the starting lines for half and full marathons. Unfortunately, there are rarely enough port-o-johns out on the course and that's why during any given race you see runners coming in and out of wooded areas at a good clip. Occasionally, we have races through strictly residential areas and some people have to make drastic decisions. I've seen at least one friend cry after a race because she found herself in the unenviable position of pooping in someone's yard, using a leaf to wipe herself.
OK, I'm aware this is probably much more than you ever wanted to know, but I needed a blog for today, THE LAST DAY OF NABLOPOMO!!!
As I said, I've been lucky and I've not had any pooping or vomiting issues to date. But, it's time for me to start training for my next full marathon in March, so there's always time. I'll keep you posted!
Now don't you all want to take up long distance running?
Hi Mrs. Schmidt!