By - 0234am
Do not take medications like that. That's not the solution to your problem and can cause a lot of others.
Routine is the answer to your question. Get yourself into a routine and practice race days on long runs days.
Thank you for the response!
I nervous shit before every race but if I often don’t before a morning long run. If this happens it’s basically guaranteed that I will go in the woods. I would just not worry too much about it, embrace the feral woods-poo.
Dry TP in a lil’ baggie in my pack shall be a MO.
I would say dry TP is the ultralight package. But if you're a bit nervous about it, and are OK carrying a few more ounces, I would recommend the deluxe package: some TP, 2 wet wipes in a separate little bag, and another small bag to put your used TP/wipes in (don't bury wet wipes). Some hand sani and an ultralight trowel like [The Deuce](https://www.google.com/aclk?sa=l&ai=DChcSEwjsy8aLx_v3AhXDHH0KHZ0-CwQYABAPGgJwdg&sig=AOD64_3zjJjYUv18VlpVek5X6Mj-Ne6_Fw&ctype=46&q=&ved=2ahUKEwiq2byLx_v3AhXxoI4IHYC4AXIQ9aACKAB6BAgCEEU&adurl=) are also nice. You can fit all of that in a smaller ziplock to give yourself piece of mind. Also, some races have portopotties at aid stations! In that case just afford yourself some time to go use one, and clean your b-hole so you don't get chafing :)
Also get used to using greenery. Wide leaf, hopefully with some dew on them ;) OR snow! God snow is the most amazing thing to wipe with.
I have literally no idea what this means
Bring asswipe on long runs and races always.
it’s a wonderful thing to have when pooing in the woods
Nothing like a good nature poop
Just get pre-race anxiety like I do and you will empty everything out before the race without worry. I do not know how to induce pre-race anxiety.
Hahah, I completely understand this! For me, that anxiety results in the opposite effect. The joys of the mind-gut connection.
Same, I’m going to do my 7th ultra or so, but it will be my first 100 miler on Saturday. I’ve never been further than 100k and I am currently (Wednesday) already having the anxiety shit
You’re a badass! I’m rootin’ for you. 🤘🏼
I am 15 days away from my first 100k and i have the same feeling. It's all i can think of
You’re a badass, too, m’friend! Rock it out.
Don’t train enough
Lol, sometimes just reading a race’s information packet will send me to the loo.
Anxiety makes me do the opposite. Not poop. So any big day I have I go the whole day without pooping 😅
Same! Opposite end of the spectrum.
Strong no to Imodium, being blocked up (and anxious!) is absolutely not what you want to be feeling. Routine is great, and I personally supplement with psyllium husk to keep the GI tract regularly clear as possible.
I ate some bad food the night before my first marathon.
Spewed from both ends like a busted fire hydrant for hours before. Took a bunch of immodium right before the race. Miles 18-26 was the most excruciating pain I’ve felt my entire life. Every step I felt a sharp stabbing pain in my stomach.
A spot on my stomach hurt for years after. I still have no idea what I did. Say no to immodium, kids.
Thank you for this!
Hope it helps - come back with an update!
Don’t neglect magnesium! It helps with regularity.
From my experience taking Imodium prior will really change the dynamics of your digestive system on race day. It slows down the normal pace and can leave you feeling extremely full and unable consume calories. I take a fiber supplement daily leading up to race day to insure a normal movement in the morning.
Thank you for this! Morning Metamucil is my friend most days.
Coffee baby. I’d stay away from something that hasn’t been tested on you more than a dozen times. One or two “test runs” isn’t a large enough sample group to determine how your body will respond.
Nothing new on race day, as they say!
Deep squats after coffee - do it everyday for 3 weeks before race day - watch how fast your body responds
Who doesn’t want a toned booty? Thank you for this!
actually wont build muscle - but will aid your mobility and ankle power
check this 5min cracker of a workout
The more you know! I’ll take both of those.
If you normally have a daily poop at the same time of day, try not to change your routine. For me, I usually go in the morning after my breakfast coffee. Coffee (and other warm caffeinated beverages) stimulate the bowel, so that is another trick. Make sure to not shut down on high fiber foods too far in advance of the race, since that could also lead to inability to poop, if that is already your tendency.
Thank you for this! Definitely plan on lots of greens next week as they certainly help me stay regular.
I say embrace the woods poop - it’s freeing (and amazing that you haven’t yet) and not that big is a deal. I’ve run maybe three races so far that haven’t involved a trip off trail, and I think my record is 8+ (do not recommend). Pre-race anxiety has made my pre-race functions somewhat hard to predict - not true for everyone, but that’s one thing I’ve had to embrace. I’m sure coffee would help if that’s what you’re used to and fiber supplements would be great if you’re using them consistently.
I have used Imodium once and it was only because of a week+ of food poisoning-like symptoms leading into the race. Drank a Kombucha the night before and had half a dose of Imodium and it helped me get my stomach back to relative normal. I can’t speak to the dangers other people are describing, but it’s a break-glass-in-case-of-emergency tool for me. I don’t want to be stopped up under normal circumstances, I’d rather take a shit or two and feel lighter and better
I have a friend who swears by chewing tobacco the day before - pack a fat lip and drop a fat shit, apparently - and regular morning coffee day of.
My guess is this won’t be your last race, so do what you can to get your body to cooperate but embrace whatever the day brings - I’m sure you’ll learn a lot from this one and stomach stuff can take a long time to iron out
“Pack a fat lip and drop a fat shit.” 😹
I’m certainly hoping it’s not the last! Thank you for the response.
I usually have a poo the morning of a race and I feel fine until about 20mins before the start then I have to go again. This only ever happens on race days.
Glycerin suppository. Works every time.
Just bought some on Amazon. That’ll give me a little time to uh, get the gist. Hahah. Thank you!
It’s weird for the first few times. But I hate trying the “coffee and pray” approach. This hasn’t let me down.
Indeed! My form of praying will take place at mile 20 on.
My routine is always coffee + breakfast, do the thing, Imodium.
I do what I would do before any other run. I have trained my body that if I am sipping a glass of water for 5-10 minutes, its time to poop because a workout is coming.
Otherwise, I carry toilet paper on all runs, and I would rather poop in the woods anyway. The crisp air as the sun comes up while I squat on a slope of the mountains is a secret joy of mine.
It’s the little things. ☀️
Careful with Imodium. It can significantly increase your heart rate.
A regular routine of morning poop time can help. Otherwise, just be prepared to dig a little cathole off trail. I've had to poop mid-race a handful of times now. It's unpleasant but doable. Just make sure to get 100% clean or the poop chafe will be unpleasant.
I didnt know about the heartrate thing from taking inmodium
Yeah, Imodium really messes with your heart. It's been linked with bradycardia, tachycardia, palpatations, arrhythmia, and dysrhythmia. From my understanding it's because loperamide impacts the potassium and sodium supply to the heart.
Good to know! Thank you for sharing.
And oof. Yeah, that doesn’t sound fun.
Coffee and a nicotine pouch
Start taking Metamucil. It’s good for you in general and makes everything come out at the same time.
It’s basically poop glue lol
Good advice, but make sure you ramp it up gradually to give your gut time to adapt to it. The worst thing you could do is consume a bunch for the first time the day before your race, unless you like the idea of feeling like an overinflated balloon. (Ask me how I know).
Oof! No one wants that feeling.
This. I will use it for like a week or two and then not use it the day of a race.
It’s definitely part of my morning routine! 💃🏻
No coffee and no dairy on race day, and Imodium 1 hour before the start. Worked wonders for me. (Note: I literally never take Imodium at any other time, just for races).
Coffee gets my morning (& usually only) poop out for the day! Don't try anything new (like the Imodium) on race day. Look up how to dig a cat hole and Leave No Trace ethics, and get in a practice woods poop in before your race. Ultrarunners and hikers in general are a pretty cool group of people, and we've all got plenty of embarrassing bathroom stories to tell! I've learned the hard way to avoid dairy on all runs cause it can cause GI issues for me.
I’ll consider my embarrassing tale part of my joining the club. Thank you for the response!
Crap in the woods
I take a magnesium supplement the night before and a strong cup of coffee in the morning of, I get a BM every time. Magic.
Magnesium citrate - I take 2 pills the night before I have big races as I have the same worry as you. A race can be ruined for me if I don’t get cleared out before a big run. Magnesium citrate is best because it’s less harsh than Imodium but it’s way more predictable and effective than diet alone or something like psyllium husk. Guarantees a solid BM, earlier than normal for me
I have a friend who swears by Immodium during a race because she has problems with a sensitive stomach. I've never done it, but I also don't mind going in the woods. Just bring some TP in a baggie and a tiny bottle of hand cleanser, just in case.
Squatty potty + bidet are my secret weapons, in addition to standard coffee + being hydrated + eating fiber. If you relax your butthole when using the bidet, you can get some water up there and it's like an enema 😹 I also make little ginger pills with grocery store ground ginger and empty veggie capsules. No upset stomach or nausea for me!
Thank you for this response!
Has Imodium upset your stomach before? If not, I suggest trying it. That's my go-to move for ultras. I get up early enough to have a coffee to get things moving, use the bathroom at least once, then take an Imodium. That has worked for every race I've done, but I still carry some toilet paper in a sandwich baggy just in case I have to step off the trail during the race.
Low bulk, easily digestible foods the day or so before. Warm beverages during the day before and day-of-race. I personally have never understood the whole Immodium thing. I get what the intent is, but seems in-line with those that take Advil before a race - unnecessary and potentially harmful. I'm not going to do something (beyond the fact that you're running an ultra distance) that impairs digestion/excretion further.
If you have to go, you have to go. Carry some wipes in a ziplock with you. If you have to go, step off, dig a small hole, do your business, clean up, pack the wipes out with you.
Thank you for your response!
2-3tbsp of apple cider vinegar on empty stomach first thing in am works for me. You can add a few drops of stevia, pinch of salt, and some lemon juice if you want a good morning drink that won’t break a fast.
I get up 2 hours before I need to leave where I'm staying so my body and digestive track has a chance to wake up and do its thing. Coffee as soon as I get up also helps.
Get up early and drink two coffees
I’ve only been running for 3ish years, but I was always taking an Imodium before a run 13 miles or over. Never had any issues feeling funny or high heart rate. Just recently I stopped taking it due to concerns like those mentioned in the comments, and I’ve had a lot of issues with “emergencies” that I’ve never had before. I also have my first ultra in June and I’m wondering if I should just continue the Imodium for now and then try to get used to running long distances without it after? I usually have no problem having a BM once I get home after a long run, whether I had Imodium or not. I do get some BM anxiety (which I know is silly but I do) so I prefer to have one at home rather than in public, or in the woods.
I get terrible anxiety about having an emergency on a run too, if I’m running with other people. I’ve only taken immodium several times pre run/race, but managed to get out of the habit by waking up a few hours early to poop, drink coffee, poop some more, and eat breakfast. Not necessarily in that order but you get the picture 😂
If it’s something that you’re used to and are having a lot of trouble with poop emergencies without it, I suppose I’d probably take it pre race but then ease off if it. Take a probiotic daily, and get your body trained to go pre run. I know it’s hard because I totally understand where you’re coming from! If I have a morning where my stomach is just not feeling good even after my routine, I’ll take a few tums or pepto, which I think helps.
Just wanted to say your BM anxiety is understood over here. Until college, when I was obviously forced to, I never pooped anywhere but my house.
I drink water as soon as I wake up to get the poopy process started. Then I have coffee and breakfast and just try to relax before it’s time to leave. As long as I have my race stuff prepped the night before, I can spend the morning trying to relax as much as possible. I watch a movie, stretch, do some yoga like happy baby or sit in a squat position to help get things moving. The more anxious I feel the harder it is to go which then leads to more anxiety
Wholeheartedly understand the anxiety spiral!
Cup of coffee always works for me.
Test out Imoduium on one of your runs. I took it during my race and it worked like a miracle!
I tend to eat things like spicy dumplings / spicy miso ramen a couple days before an event. It guarantees I empty out the day before and only eat basic food I know won’t cause me problems from then on
It’s all about mental. It’s similar that someone has stomach issue due to stress during examination. I believe doing more races, or do some training races with your friend may help. Talk more about racing experience with your friend may also help.
I think this first one will help a lot in terms of the next, for sure!
I feel you - same issues for me, whether on a training run or race.
Tbh, I've tried coffee, low fibre diet the days prior, laxative teas and Imodium, routine etc.
But still got to go within mile 2-6...
For training runs: baggie containing hand sanitizer, biodegradable wet wipes, Deuce lightweight spade (dig cat hole, bury wetwipes, clean hands)
For races: hand sanitizer/wipes, wet wipes, and 2 dog poop bags (for used wet wipes). Dump the used baggie at the closest aid station.
I hate seeing used TP in nature, hence I either bag or bury.
Remember - at an ultra, it's v. common for people to answer nature's call in nature :) and it feels sooo much better having gone.
Good luck and enjoy the race!