I had a great question via email this week and wanted to share my response with everyone.  Keep in mind, this is not medical advice, always check with your own physician.  DISCLAIMER:  This is just what I do.  Some people will have adverse reactions to over the counter supplements.  Always make sure there is no interaction with your current medications before taking anything new, even if it is available over the counter.

Question from Lakewood, OH:

My question is that for the few days leading up to my period I have absolutely no stamina or ‘legs’ and of course it is looking like the race might fall into that window (fingers crossed it doesn’t).  Any tips on how to deal with this besides just accepting a slower race pace?

My Reply:

It may be too close to experiment since it’s only a month away, but in the future try experimenting with the foods you eat in the week prior to your epected periods.  Try to avoid caffiene, fats & processed foods.  Make sure your sleep pattern is routine. If needed, I suggest trying melatonin and/or valarian root for a sound night’s sleep.  You can also take ibuprofin to help decrease flow, the suggested dose is 800mg 3 times a day for this purpose, but check with your OB/Gyn before trying it. These things can all help. Other than that, just be thankful you can run & play and get otu there and enjoy the race.


If you are inclined to do further research on your own, here is a nice paper to get you started. Many others exist. Bottom line seems to be that not every woman will respond in the same way and some may not notice any changes throughout the cycle.

Finally, if you are experiencing significant problems, either physical or emotional, to the extend that they interfere with your normal functioning, be certain to talk to your physician or gynecologist.

What kinds of strategies do you use to deal with “Aunt Flo” while you train?

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