Question of the Week: Post Race Problems

I’ve heard some great input from everyone with both responses (from the question of the week) AND and question of the week ideas.  I was planning on using one of the ideas someone offered for today’s post, but I had to push another topic to the top last minute…

{I decided that it would be fun and interesting to have a “Question of the Week.”  I will follow this up with another post consisting of the answers that I compile from everyone.  If you would like to contribute a question to use, I would love to give you the credit for it and shout out to your blog/twitter/facebook/etc.  E-mail me with question of the week ideas:  jcglover27@gmail.com}  

This week’s topic is:  Post Race Problems

Watching Brendan get his award as my stomach is yelling at me

How can I post about this topic without crossing the line into TMI?  I guess I could start by saying that I normally have some stomach problems after races-especially long distances, but this time it has been different.  Days after running the Runner’s World Half Marathon, I still don’t feel well.  I won’t list the specific symptoms, but just imagine those awful stomach GI issues that arise after a race-that’s me.  I hate that within an hour or two after a race, I can expect to feel awful.  I would love to fix this problem of mine!  So…

What post race recovery ideas have you tried to help fight off any potential upset stomach/GI issues?  And have they worked?  

Any input is greatly appreciated as I have another half marathon coming up soon.

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16 thoughts on “Question of the Week: Post Race Problems

  1. Oh man! I’m so sorry about your belly troubles!! What works best for me when my tummy is hurting is gingerale and saltines. I’m sure youve heard this, but it really does help! I also know my one friend who suffers from IBS swears by tums and kaopectate. Hope that this helps at all!!!!! Have a fab day! Xxoo

  2. Yikes, sorry to hear about your tummy troubles. 😦 Luckily, I’ve never experienced stomach issues during or after a race. (*Knock on wood.*) Maybe try hydrating more to “flush” the source of the issues out of your system?

  3. I’m sorry girl I usually get issues before and during. I just take shot bloks as they don’t hurt my stomach. After, I take in liquids until around lunch time when I take in more sticky carbs to give me more in my belly. Hope you feel better!

  4. After one race where I had GI “issues”, I now take an Imodium tablet before any big race. Lots of ultra runners do this. I haven’t had any issues since, thank goodness!
    You’d probably want to test it on a long run before actually doing it for a race. Good luck!

  5. Jenelle, so many people suffer in this way. I’m sorry you’re one of them, but thanks for posting the question! I’ve experience horibble stomach problems post race when doing the half iron distance in triathlon. I think issues arise from the high intensity over an extended time durning which we either 1) eat very little – causing the stomach to shut down and blood flow is sent to the muscles or 2) we eat simple sugars for sustanined energy – this keeps the stomach functioning, but simple sugars tend to be “flushed” out of the body a.s.a.p.

    I haven’t come up with a solution, but I plan to try easing back into eating after my next endurance race by having a low sugar, balanced carb/protien/fat, easy to digest snack that I can take in SLOWLY. A stomach that is either shut down or in “flush” mode can’t absorb much of anything, so any food is more likely to go straight through OR come right back up.

    I hope you are able to find a fueling and recovery strategy that works for you!

  6. Unfortunately I have them no matter what, race or no race, and running actually exacerbates the problem 😦 After my first 1/2 marathon, I was super ill for about 6-7 hours afterwards. It was literally HELL.

  7. Oh girl I am sooo sorry! I experience this sometimes too…I take an Immodium and usually it fixes it. What are you fueling with? I know that Gu and other gels upset a lot of people’s tummies. I hope you figure it out girl…not fun feeling bad!

  8. I have the same issues. Most recently it happened to me during my last 20 mile training run and all I wanted to do immediately after was to lay down on the floor to sleep it off. If I try to move or eat, I would be afraid that I would get sick. It also happened to me again after the Chicago Marathon. I went to a post-marathon gathering with some of my team members but again all I wanted to do was lay on the floor but knew I couldn’t at the bar so I just tried to stick through. I tried to drink plenty of water and went to the bathroom a lot. I was finally able to eat something 5 hours later. I have yet to find a solution for this without me thinking/feeling that I will get sick. If and when you find a solution please let me know. I would love to stop having this feeling.

    Thank you for sharing this question.

  9. I struggle with this issue too. I was so worried with last weekend’s Army Ten Miler b/c I had to catch a plane later, but I was fine. What did I do differently? I ate normally the days before – no carb loading. I ate something simple the morning of – Kashi waffle with 1/2 banana, then some PB crackers closer to start time — I sipped Gatorade during the race but not too much (this may only work in cool weather). I drank water and ate something soon after the race (a Kashi granola bar that they handed out), instead of not eating for a while like I usually do. When my stomach felt a bit rumbly later, I took some Pepto (but maybe I should try Immodium, since Pepto alone hasn’t worked before). The bottom line is that you need to figure out what works for you, but I do think that what you consume during the race can matter, and that eating something simple soon after can actually help. Good luck!

  10. Avoiding dairy can be helpful for a few days. I also tend to easily digestible foods like soup. I haven’t experienced stomach problems like you have, so I can’t give you a great answer, but what I said above I tend to do after races because I feel just a little bit off. Hope you feel better quickly!

  11. I have a tendency to feel like crap after races too especially long distance ones for at least the first couple of hours after finishing. I would say pay attention to what you are eating to fuel up for your race. Are you eating enough prior to keep your body hydrated and energized? The most important meal is what you have for dinner 2 nights before you race. This is when you should be carbo-loading. If you eat anything too heavy the night before sometimes you wake up feeling heavy. Also cooling down after a race sometimes helps. Do a light shake out run rather than just stopping and sitting. Hope this helps.

  12. Jenelle~ that’s awful! I had a bad 15K race once where I thought I was going to “go” from mile 5 on. No port-a-potties in sight. After I finished I had bathroom issues the rest of the day. I realized later that the bowl of Kashi Go Lean Crunch that I had pre-race was NOT a good idea. What works for me is simple (white) carbs beforehand- english muffin with fruit spread is my current LR favorite! Oatmeal is also good too.
    Also, paying attention to what you eat the night before the LR/race can help too- I learned that black bean burritoes are not good long run fuel.
    As for the after- try to eat something “real food” as soon as you feel physically ready- it will help settle your ripped up stomach down. I have a really hard time eating after longer runs and races, esp if I’m feeling sick, but the few times I’ve been able to choke down a few Fig Newtons it’s helped!
    Good luck, hope you are able to figure it out soon!
    Are you running Red Baron?

  13. I keep my food pretty plain, and I find that sports drinks help to get my electrolytes back to where they should be (I didn’t realise how much this affected my tummy). When all else fails, immodium and panadol help me to get on with life. Thinking of you! That sucks.

  14. For any nausea, ginger products work well. You can get candied ginger, ginger cough drops, and ginger tea. Trying some crackers or tiny pieces of bread to absorb stomach acid. When I used to have WICKED debilitating stomach issues, I’d buy a bag of white rolls and just take a pinch or two at a time until my stomach had enough in it that I could actually eat anything of substance.

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