Exercising With a Vagina: A Users Guide

This little doozy has been sitting on my to write about list since the spring but I kept putting it off. Not for the reasons you might think like shame or decency but rather my mom started reading this blog in the spring. So sorry mom but it’s just got to be done!  You might think that this is a summer focused topic but that’s not been my experience and that’s all I’m going to say directly about my downstairs, probably. Let’s just pretend a friend told me about this. Which friend? Don’t worry you don’t know her plus I have more than one friend.

Every lady and her lady is different

So some of this stuff I don’t have any experience with but I actually do have some lady running friends so I want to touch on that stuff too. Some of us swear by one thing and others the exact opposite so for certain things there are options which I’ll discuss. If you find something that works for you and it’s against common advice you’re the one that lives with your most personal decisions so you do you! 

Biking: sitting on your jiggly bits

First get a gel seat with LADY SPECIFIC cutouts, you might not want to marry the first one you try in life or bike seats, that’s okay, but like men (or whatever) there is one out there made just for your vulvarine. This will help. Next padded bike shorts are your friend as are bikes with suspension, even if it’s just the seat post. But like a lot of things ladies have to endure it only hurts like that the first time, well the first time each season. There is truth to the idea of building up your saddle sore. It’s terrible on the first long ride and you might walk like a cowboy in spurs for a day or so after but the next ride will be so much better.

Pick the right fabric for your underwear

Most people will tell you synthetic wicks better and so it’s the top choice. If that doesn’t help try going to a running shop and buying the special undies there. If that doesn’t work try cotton, some ladies still say no matter what it’s best for them. In general synthetic and wicking when your working out and cotton when you’re not is best to avoid infections. But the perfect pair of panties might take some experimenting.

Size up or size down your undies

Once you’re done with fabric choices then it’s on to size if breathability is your main goal you can go for something looser and size up. However if chaffing is something that’s getting your goat consider going for a size or two smaller to keep everything tucked in. Think about your favorite pair of skinny jeans. Fresh out of the wash and god forbid dryer and it’s a workout just to get into them. An hour later and they might even be too loose. I’m not sure if it’s the fabric or the elastic at fault but after an hour of warmth and movement they seem to grow. You might even try ones that are legit too tight when you put them on for a while.

Or let your beaver run free

Some ladies swear that nothing comes between them and their leggings, for others it’s a hard no. Perhaps your not a runner but what your think of as classic short, looser running shorts have an almost paper thin gusset in them. For some ladies that’s the perfect thing. However certain stiching patterns in a crotch can be problematic but if you’re still searching for the perfect thing classic running shorts might be the solution.

Change out of your underwear also get a purse with a ZIPPERED hidden pocket

No matter how cold or non-sweaty you are afterwards change you undies or go bottomless for a few minutes (or both) after to avoid what a former lifeguard friend called crotch rot after working out. It can make vaginosis, yeast, rawness and chaffing so much better in the longer term of a training cycle. Seriously! Also sit like a man after and let it breath for a while. If you’ll be transporting used running undies on the regular get a purse with a zippered hidden pocket so they don’t pop out at the worst time. If they do swearing up and down that they are from a 15 km run earlier isn’t going to make the situation better!

Chlorine is acid to your lady taco

Even if you don’t think so, you weren’t in that long chlorine is not nice to your vajajay! Also washing in your suit isn’t enough nor is a quick rinse. Strip down and wash and especially rinse well. Some muffs are so sensitive that you might want a fresh post shower towel to dry off with. If you’re waiting will you get home, then go directly home, do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars.

Pee away your yeast

The lady that told me this changed my life, I passed it on and changed 4 more lives, I mean my friend did with this advice. Pee after you do anything forcing stuff up the love canal, that could include certain workouts. I would imagine squatting or bike riding might be irritating for some ladies. Even if you don’t have too, even if you’re drunk pee right after. If you’re having issues with yeast this advice might change your life too, you’re welcome.

Lube up your pink canoe

Chaffing can be real yo! When one portion of the camel toe is rubbing up against another lube it up. As workouts get longer, harder or change you might have an issue. Friction is not your friend. I gather all the commentarial sports lubes are designed for this purpos, the big one in the market is body glide. Also a rainy race can raise a red clamshell situation even if it never has been before. But plain old Vaseline is what a lot of people swear is best. If you think you might have an issue tuck some Vaseline into tin foil and stick it in your sports bra.

Perhaps it’s best not to be bare down there

The trend to be completely bare down there had been going on so long it’s probably a permanent shift now. As a biologist and human I know we grow thicker hair where we do because evolution says we need it. Pubic hair has a number of functions but one is limiting friction of surrounding body parts rubbing against each other so having some can limit chaffing issues. It also can protect against certain bacterial pathogens so if you keep getting bacterial vaginosis maybe it’s time to consider a new haircut for fanny. Also FYI if ya had some and now you don’t expect that to impact your workouts for a while.

Be mindful of your bottoms

In general your bottoms can impact your front bottom. Generally either tight or loose might not be your thing when you have a choice. I can really go either way. Same with regular stitching vs a gusset in the crotch of your pants. No matter which you prefer obnoxious stitching can make your hoo-hee angry. So where you have a choice make the right one for you. Sometimes though you just don’t have a choice. For a lot of ladies this will be a summer thing with warmer temperatures and lots of extra sweat. But some (raises hand) have more of an issue in the winter. I live in a cold climate for early spring training and our big city race is in late may. So as the km started to rack up for half marathon training this year I realized it was my winter pants causing an issue. Once the temperature plunges I’m pretty much down to one pair of pants to choose from, nike shield tights and I love them still I even recommend them in this post about running gear worth investing in. They are just the right amount of windproof but not lined and bulky, for really cold days I layer something under them and they are literally the most expensive pants I own. But they really do seal you away from the outside world and I’ve since learned that if I’m going to be wearing them for a long time or a lot I need to take the opportunity to ‘air out’ after the fact. Truthfully this has been the only real issue I’ve had with my downstairs while working out. But given the climate I run in tight, windproof and long is pretty much a have to a lot of the time. Plus we often suffer from second winter in April, Sad face!

So sorry mom but it just had to be done! What issue have you ‘heard of’ and what were the solutions you came to? In all seriousness please share in the comments below it’s bound to help another sister out!

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