Couch to 5K
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Lets talk about Pee!

I thought I would put this post up over all the forums as this year in the UK there is a heatwave forecast. I know some will say they live in heat hotter than that. To me its not important whether it arrives or not but I think it is important we talk about running and heat on here.

As some of you know at my Half Marathon there were a lot of casualties due to the heat. We often talk about hydration and dehydration on here. As I was thinking about this today I realised that as many of us are new to running do we really know why its so important. I have put a list together of web pages to have a little read about and get an understanding how important it is when we run that we are properly hydrated.

Please feel free to discuss this and post positive links that can help us all to understand our hydration and keep us all safe while we are out running.

What the NHS definition of Dehydration is.

NHS Choices. There is a bit on the bottom of the page. Do I need to drink when Iexercise.

This is a good article explaining why hydration is important. There are many schools of thought about what you should drink but what happens to your body is a staple.

As always the most important thing is to know yourself. Look into the toilet bowl and judge yourself. I know some will say its not totally accurate but it is free and gives you a starting place.

This is a good indication of Pee Colour from Sports Lucozade

15 Replies

Wow, brilliant idea for a post RFC and so timely. You've put together quite a comprehensive reading list, and it's all good stuff. Thanks for taking the time to share :)


I saw the header and thought: pee nice. Sorry.

Or there's this (whilst trying to check out green urine): 

(As a result of rummaging around I found a belly dancing class on the NHS site. This I am going to do)


I really like your link, thank you. 

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I am not sure that we can generalise about hydration. I have seen people who run for 2 hours in the Australian climate without drinking - and I have seen others going for a short walk carrying a large water bottle. I have seen checkout operators at the supermarket with water bottles.  I do have to remind myself to drink during longruns over 10K - up to 10K I can mostly go without , obviously depending on the circumstances.  I have only recently purchased a so-called rehydration powder which you mix with water to take now with me on my longer HM training runs ( the last one of 18K took me 2&1/2 hours. 


That's the whole point of the post to get people thinking about their own personal hydration rather than generalisation. We are all different and if you know what you need and signs to look out for you then that's the best place to be. 

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Great post, thanks RFC. Just to say that the first link didn't work but this did:

Exercise aside, I'm more likely to get dehydrated in winter when it's cold as I find it hard to drink enough water.

Once it gets to about 20 degrees I always have water with me, even if I'm only running for half an hour.

My tips for surviving when it's hot (although they won't necessarily help you stay hydrated):

Wear a hat and sunglasses

Run in the shade

Splash water on your wrists while you're running (or pour it on your head if you want, it's just not culturally appropriate here)

Run before 8 in the morning or after 7 in the evening

Be kind to yourself with regard to pace - running in the heat saps your energy although I've not come across a good explanation as to why - I guess the blood is trying to cool you so not getting to the muscles as much?

Apologies for duplicating - posting this to both C25K and Bridge to 10K


Thanks for posting this RFC.

Very interesting reading . I struggle to drink plain water, I have lots of cuppa teas ,but have been trying to increase my quota of water.

Very timely post ! xxx


Don't feel bad about drinking tea, it's liquid. Lots of places (used to) say you shouldn't count it as part of your intake of water, but think about the colour of your pee. Of course it's helped you hydrate. The "wisdom" goes that because you need to pee some time after drinking tea or coffee, then it must make you pee and therefore dehydrate you/not count towards intake. I can't find the link, but I read somewhere that the initial work on this didn't consider the fact that when you drink water, you have to pee afterwards and the difference in volume isn't significant. Except alcohol - that does dehydrate.

Obviously avoid calorie laden drinks and don't drink "too much" tea because of the caffeine (haha, is that possible!!)

These links might help:

You'll like the title of this one:


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I'm a big fan of tea.  I brew a pot every morning for 10mins. (Best for antioxidants) and then put it In a 24 hour flask, then dip into it all day.  There was a program On The BBC that did experiments on how good it was.  I was looking for the link but they took of the episode.  I think it was call Britains favourite supermarket foods.  In the same episode they did milk v sports drink after exercise.  Milk came in tops.  


Thank you so much for posting this RNB ! These words are music to my ears Ha ha ! :-)

I don't take sugar in my tea, just milk so that's an added bonus !

Cheers everyone ! *  Clinks bucket of tea * :-D xxx

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Important topic - thank you for the links, very interesting and so useful especially for new runners like me. 


Great links and a really useful post. Thanks RFC.


My niece told me about an app that helps you monitor your water intake and I've downloaded it. It's called Hydro Coach (I'm sure there are other similar ones). I've been using it for about 3 days now and it's good. It gives you reminders to drink and it's getting me to get 2 litres of water down per day. I am actually feeling better for it already :)


The first link on dehydration doesn't seem to work now, but I've saved the one about food & drink as a guide although I think I already have a carbohydrate-filled diet. It's useful to see the protein stuff too though. The hydration business should be obvious to us all really shouldn't it? But it's not always easy to take on board enough fluid, especially when we're rushing around with our other (non-running) stuff. A good little guide, thank you.


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