Roll Tide

5 Aug

I’ve come to the conclusion that my weekly workout recaps are boring. Instead of recapping every uneventful mile, I want to talk about periods.  I don’t feel the need to offer an ohmygod she’s going to talk about periods disclaimer here – male or female, you shouldn’t really get grossed out about it.  If you do, you perhaps need to reexamine your ideas on how human life is spawned.

But my male readers probably aren’t going to get a whole lot out of this post, so boys – you’re dismissed until my next post.


It’s a proven fact that menstruation effects running, and not just because you feel like your energy levels are hemorrhaging along with your ovaries.  For me personally, I notice that I gain a lot of water weight during PMS and then it drops off the day after my period.  I feel completely drained of energy during this time as well.  Last weekend, I started to feel the impending doom symptoms coming on.  During 5K training, I would just skip 3-4 days of working out but I know I can’t get into the habit of doing that during 10K training.  Instead, I did a little research on why my body reacts like this and what I can do to circumvent it.

According to an article in Runner’s World, it turns out that when you have PMS your body’s plasma levels are effected.  This isn’t rocket science – your body is losing blood so how could your plasma levels not be effected.  But what is really  happening in there?  As your plasma decreases, your blood becomes thicker and the blood flow in your muscles decreases.  You may feel slower or weaker and it can take your body longer to recover.  The article recommended sodium loading prior to running/working out, which can expand your plasma volume. If you want to be really scientific, you can do a sweat loss experiment where you weigh yourself before and after running/working out during each phase of your period.  That way, you can test your own body to see if it is effected by sodium depletion.

Another reason why I might be feeling like I have less energy is iron depletion.  Apparently iron levels are only effected if you have a particularly heavy flow, which I do.


So what is my solution?  Get myself tested a state of the art sports facility to determine how my body reacts during each day of my menstrual cycle and then listen to all the awesome advice my team of medical professionals gives me.  I’m also going to start weighing myself before and after my runs to see how my body is effected by sweat loss.  I swear I have the smallest bladder in the world, so if I drink much of anything before or during my run I need to use the bathroom.  If I am effected by sweat loss, then I may drink some Gatorade prior to running.  That way, my body is hydrated but my bladder isn’t full!  Also, I need to start taking a multivitamin.  I’m sort of embarrassed that I don’t all ready do this, but whatever.

I did notice a significant dip in my energy levels this week, along with a decrease in my mileage.  Being hungover on Sunday didn’t help this situation at all, but hey – YOLO.

I want to hear from you: Does your period get in the way or your training?

What do you do to combat your PMS symptoms? 

Next week’s carrots:

This week I clocked 7.15 miles.

My fastest pace was 11:26.

My farthest distance was 2.59 miles.


2 Responses to “Roll Tide”

  1. Pittsburgh Runner August 5, 2013 at 8:17 pm #

    LOL, I used to love Mean Girls, that scene in the gym is so funny.

    I’m not really bothered by mine with running, but I do get super bitchy, so I HAVE to run so I don’t kill someone.

    You could add a B12 supplement too, it helps with energy!

    • SOLEfortheSoul August 6, 2013 at 10:34 am #

      Thanks for advice! I almost think I have PMDD because my symptoms are so bad. I have to go grab some whey powder this week, so I will grab some B12, too. Couldn’t hurt to give it a try!

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