Do marathon runners stop to pee? The average marathon time is about 4 hours and 21 minutes, so what do runners do when they need to pee?
Have you ever wondered if marathon runners stop to pee? Many runners famously pee themselves, but others prefer to run in dry clothing, thank you very much. Thankfully, many marathon runners stop to use a porta potty.
While it’s easier for men to urinate on the go, women find it a bit more challenging because of our biological differences.
Do Marathon Runners Stop To Pee?
The average time for running a marathon is about 4 hours and 21 minutes, and most runners will need to pee during this time. However, people with good urinary tract health can go up to four hours without urinating, so running a marathon without peeing is entirely possible.
But not every runner can go four or more hours without peeing. Race coordinators put porta-potties along the route, so if you’re not running to win, it’s easy to make the time to stop and pee. Keep in mind that many runners compete against only themselves, not others, so stopping to pee isn’t that big of a deal.
After all, most of us can pee in less than a minute. Therefore, it’s easy to get in and out of a porta-potty in less than three minutes if you do not have to wait in line for the toilet.
Men competing against other runners frequently pee publicly, with some discretion. If there are trees along the trail, it’s easy enough to pee discreetly, and other runners barely even stop or slow down to notice someone peeing.
If you think you need to go, don’t skip the chance because it may be a good distance before the next porta-potty comes into view.
If you liked this post, you might be interested in our ultramarathon guide.
How To Avoid Peeing During A Marathon
If you want to avoid urinating during a marathon, follow these tips.
- Get very hydrated the day before running your marathon, especially before bedtime.
- On the morning of your race, drink just enough to satisfy your thirst, then don’t drink anymore.
- Five minutes before the race starts, guzzle an entire bottle full of water. Drink as much as you can.
- Tuck some toilet tissue or baby wipes into your fanny pack or pocket just in case you need to go.
You might prefer these alternatives to running.
FAQs About Peeing During A Marathon
Do Distance Runners Pee Themselves?
Some distance runners do pee themselves, and in many cases, it’s not intentional. For dedicated competitive marathon runners, peeing publicly or in their clothing is just a part of their life in running.
Another issue is that some people have damaged or weak pelvic muscles. In longer races such as ultra-marathons, runners will have to stop to pee. If the competition is tight, some runners will opt to pee in their clothing to keep running.
Do Marathon Runners Poop Their Pants?
For a few different reasons, runners can experience something called “the trots.” This happens because the mechanics of running can trigger the bowels. Essentially, your organs are jostling around.
Approximately 71% of marathon runners experience diarrhea or abdominal cramping. However, unlike the runners who occasionally intentionally pee on themselves, no one has ever been known to poop their pants on purpose during a marathon.