How to minimize nature breaks during long races?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    How to minimize nature breaks during long races?

    Every time I have a long race, 1:15 minutes in I have to pee really bad. Granted, I can usually just pull over and get it done with in a short period of time, but it always interrupts the rhythm and it takes me a few minutes to get back up to speed and mentally get back in the game. Usually after that point, it's minimal, but it seems like I can never avoid the first hour relief point.

    Most people recommend hydrating when you get up for endurance races but very few things I've tried has helped.

    Do I hydrate the night before and get up early and then not drink anything?

    What does everyone else do?

    Or do I just have an abnormally small bladder?

  2. #2
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    Unless you have a bladder problem, it is largely trainable.
    When you do training riders, try to delay your 1st pee for as long as possible.

    I have had similar issues- But I trained it.
    In my last event I went more than 3 hours without peeing- I could have gone all the way.
    I only come to pee on a gradual and smooth descent where I was able to pee off the bike and not lose time, speed, or placing.

  3. #3
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    I like to eat to trigger inflammation the night before after a long streak of Paleo.

  4. #4
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    Hydration should start 48-72 hours before your event. Don't pound liquids the morning of your event.

    Drinking electrolyte/glucose mixes such as Skratch or similar will allow you to "hold onto" more water and better absorption. Drinking straight water usually leads to less absorption of fluids.

    Also, cold weather diuresis may have something to do with it. This is the effect of cold weather causing vasoconstriction leading to increased fluid volume to your core which sends signals to your kidneys to dump fluid. Stay as warm as possible (without overheating) right up to the start of your event.

    Of course, I assume you are urinating right before your start.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by king_dave72 View Post
    Hydration should start 48-72 hours before your event. Don't pound liquids the morning of your event.

    Drinking electrolyte/glucose mixes such as Skratch or similar will allow you to "hold onto" more water and better absorption. Drinking straight water usually leads to less absorption of fluids.

    Also, cold weather diuresis may have something to do with it. This is the effect of cold weather causing vasoconstriction leading to increased fluid volume to your core which sends signals to your kidneys to dump fluid. Stay as warm as possible (without overheating) right up to the start of your event.

    Of course, I assume you are urinating right before your start.
    ^^ Yes. Esp for longer events, I've been advised by two separate coaches to load up on the salts beforehand as somewhat of an insurance policy; 1000mg the night before and 1000mg the morning of. You need to drink a lot of liquid in order for this to be productive - overconsumption of sodium chloride will actually dehydrate you through osmolality unless you're putting enough liquids in - but I find I'm not peeing as much for the first few hours of the race.

  6. #6
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    I always try to finish pre-race hydration one full hour before the start. I know, that's tough with a 0615 start time in a hundy, but I did say "try".

    In younger years, when I was part of the lead (or lead-ish) group, I would mind fock everybody else into stopping. "Come on, you know you have to pee.....". But typically at the 3 hour mark.

    Remember: All mind focking shall be friendly in nature. This is endurance racing.
    Whining is not a strategy.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bootsie_cat View Post
    Unless you have a bladder problem, it is largely trainable.
    Not if you make the mistake of growing old.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by winters.benjamin View Post
    ^^ Yes. Esp for longer events, I've been advised by two separate coaches to load up on the salts beforehand as somewhat of an insurance policy; 1000mg the night before and 1000mg the morning of. You need to drink a lot of liquid in order for this to be productive - overconsumption of sodium chloride will actually dehydrate you through osmolality unless you're putting enough liquids in - but I find I'm not peeing as much for the first few hours of the race.
    Going to give this a shot and try the Skratch Hyperhydration mix. I tend to lose a lot of salt (jersey and face is crusted with it after a long hard ride) so at the very least it should help performance somewhat.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Udyr View Post
    Going to give this a shot and try the Skratch Hyperhydration mix. I tend to lose a lot of salt (jersey and face is crusted with it after a long hard ride) so at the very least it should help performance somewhat.
    This is a good method. You can also pop an Endurolytes Extreme pill from Hammer. That's an easy solution for me.

  10. #10
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    I agree with others regarding "pre-loading" the night before. You want to hit the line hydrated, but maybe you are over-doing in the hour or two immediately before the race.

    Having said that, it isn't unusual... look at the Euro Road Racing... they always pull over in-mass in the first hour and take a nature break... of course they have the luxury of time, this is generally when the first break is formed up and a nature break is a good way to let the breakaway group get a bit of a gap. Sometimes you see this on TV coverage, but I can assure you this is the norm at every race.

    I have a friend who is a well regarded Iron-man coach, and he recommends getting up extra early before a race to hydrate/eat and allow time for the body to process and 'eliminate' before the race start.
    TTUB - Ventura County California

  11. #11
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    Train how to get back up to speed faster, and back into the game. Don't train to hydrate less.

  12. #12
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    Ya'll are stopping? Maybe I'm in the minority, but I can't remember the last time I peed in an endurance race. Maybe a couple years ago at my first 6hr. I'm usually sweating enough to struggle taking in enough fluids. Even at ORAMM last year I had 7-8 bottles in 7 hours and zero bathroom breaks.

    I load electrolytes days before. Not too much hydration, but enough. If I'm peeing every 1-2 hours I'm drinking too much in the days leading up to the race. Tons of salt...literally eating 1tsp a day of pink himalayan plus whatever's in my food. Just got blood work done and sodium was pretty low, no cramps on hot south FL 6 hr races so it's working for me. Face looks like a powdered donut afterwards though.

    I'm curious...how many times are you all stopping in a 6hr race?
    -DC, just some XC Bum in Sfla...

  13. #13
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    Depends on the weather for the race. On a hot day (endurance racing into the 110+ range) I'll piss a lot, probably hourly. But "stopping" being loosely defined. I try to stay rolling while I piss. If I must, I just jump off, drop the bike, piss, then get back on. I lose seconds. I don't plan it out, I just know that with the heat I have to sweat a lot to keep the core temp down. That means replacing with water.

    When the temps are down I might not stop at all. I don't remember stopping for the one 50mile/10k' race I did last fall. But the average temp was 57* (34 start, 81 max).

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