A Runner’s Thoughts—Potty Training

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You get up to your alarm nice and early…eat breakfast, let your food settle, get ready and go out for a run…and even though you JUST went to the bathroom before locking the door…you have to go again.

Welcome to my demise.

I know, this may be a little TMI, and usually it just happens with nerves on race days. Anyone who has been to any race knows what it’s like at the porta-potties…lines longer than at Disney World. You have to get in line early so you have enough time before start time, but if you go too early, you have to go again. If you go too late, you might miss the start. If you don’t think you have to go, I guarantee by the time the gun goes and your timing chip starts timing, you will have to go.

And you men out there—-you all suck. Completely. I can’t tell you how many times, and I know any female long-distance runner will agree, I have seen men swerve off a marathon course, even at only 1/2 a mile in, into the bushes to let out their schlong.

Not. Even. Fair.

Where am I going with this? No where really, but just lamenting a common runner problem, and a deeper problem for women. Today I had a 10 mile training run to do, and I needed to do it early. See, I headed up to Calgary this afternoon to stay at a friend’s place, because my early morning flight to DISNEY WORLD is tomorrow! So yes, I have had excited jitters all day. All week really. And I think I actually went to the bathroom three times from when I woke up, to when I went on my run…all between 7:30 and 9:00 am. But, of course, I start running down my street and I got to pee. Maybe the two cups of coffee did something, or maybe all the red wine from last night did, but I digress…I refuse to turn around and go back home so I tailor my run through Copperwood neighborhood, over to The Crossings and the new high school and library—after three miles I arrive at my pit stop: the public library.

After this 3 mile stop, I was fine the final 7 miles, but I made sure to loop past public areas where restrooms were available—Tim Horton’s on the Westside and the public bathrooms at Nicholas Sheran Park. As I ran those first three miles, though, I remembered three races that bathroom stops and mental blocks absolutely ruined me-Calgary full 2009 and Edmonton Derby half 2011. When you gotta go, you gotta go. It just sucks when it happens at a race. And even most recently, at the Millarville half in June 2013, I got in the porta-potty line too late. There goes being able to focus on my run.

So, as I head off to the wonderful world of Disney tomorrow, I will be thinking lots about my upcoming RunDisney events—Wine & Dine Half Marathon and the Dopey Challenge. And I will be reminding myself how I don’t want to ruin the race experience for myself and that getting in line to go pee before the race, even more than once, is a key factor to having a magical race!

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