Exercise and UTI-a little TMI so proceed with caution

  • Hi there,
    I've noticed that the more I work out, the more frequently I get a UTI. I think it's because of the sweat and excessive showering. I was wondering if anyone else is experiencing this and if so, how you deal with it. Do you wear cotton underthings underneath your workout shorts or pants? How do you avoid this issue?
  • Oh no, that sounds awful I've never personally had a UTI related to exercise that I know of. If it gets too extreme, I hope you'll call a doctor!

    Excessive showering? How often are you showering? Could you simply clean up with some baby wipes after a workout instead of over-showering?

    I know everyone says to always wear cotton undies, but I don't think that should apply when working out, because cotton takes so long to dry. I highly recommend a quick dry material for your underthings for exercise. I do a lot of long-distance hiking and have never experienced an issue down there.

    I swear by my Ex-Officio panties. They are pricey, but they are super comfortable and never leave me feeling damp. Sometimes you can catch a really good price on Amazon. But there's other brands that do similar things, just look for ones that say "quick dry" or "moisture wicking."

    You might also try drinking a little cranberry juice (unsweetened) or taking cranberry pills, as a preventative measure. Worked for me the last time I had a string of UTIs.
  • I've never had a UTI from exercising but I've had plenty of them to know them with the first twinge of pain. They are horrid and awful.

    Will your doctor give you a prescription to hold onto? I was allowed to get a refill as needed and took Bactrim to use as a preventative measure. It saved me the pain, the hassle of a urine test in the office and all the other unpleasant moments. Obviously I have had so many that my doctor trusts me to know when that's the issue vs. self-medicating.

    My only suggestion to you is not to clean that area so hard. Gentle cleaning with soap and water and "airing" out with a nightshirt and no undies might help. Sorry if that's too personal and TMI, I didn't know how to write it.

    I take at least 2 showers a day (sometimes 3) depending on my exercise routine but don't scrub any one area too much. It's more mental than a dirty body if that makes any sense.

    Good luck. UTIs are the devil.
  • No, I'm not scrubbing or anything, and some days I do take two showers (one in the morning before work and then one when I get home from the gym). I wonder if it's from excessive sweating and then sitting around in my gym clothes for a bit afterward. I've been taking Azo for a few days now to try to curb it and taking cranberry supplements, but it just occurred to me that this was going on the more I worked out. I used to live in Hawaii and I can remember sitting around in a wet bathing suit for a long time and the same thing happening.
    I'll look into moisture wick undies, thanks for that suggestion!
  • I don't think you can shower too much. You may want to get out of the sweaty undies ASAP. It's like a swimsuit, the longer you're exposed the higher the potential.

    I used to get UTIs about every 6 months. Usually vacation is my biggest culprit. I have gotten some supplements though that I think help quite a bit. I take D-mannose which I take during high risk times (Post sex, dehydrated, and vacation. (it's not very cheap so I do skimp on daily doses). It seems to help prevent them.

    Give them a shot and take some cranberry supplements with it too..and stay hydrated. Remember to pee after sex and after you take those sweaty undies off!

    UTIs definitely SUCK
  • perhaps higher rate of dehydration? Just throwing that out there.
  • That's unusual. Usually a UTI would not be caused by sitting in wet clothing. Bacteria enter the urethra and go up the urinary tract to the bladder. They are usually caused when either frequently retaining urine when you need to pee, after sex and not peeing, etc.

    Yeast infections are more likely to be caused by that. They have a white discharge with
    UTI's typically require antibiotics to stop them, but cranberry does help.

    If you are getting them frequently, you should go to a doctor to consult and make sure there's no structural issue. In regards to the exercise, as others suggested, moisture wick clothing and showering immediately when you get home from gym or shower at the gym.
  • Quote:
    I wonder if it's from excessive sweating and then sitting around in my gym clothes for a bit afterward.
    I think you answered your question here... I definitely think it's from sitting around in gym clothes, the bacteria from the sweat, IMO, is giving you these infections... I shower several times per day too on days I workout and always rinse my bottom in lots or warm water with the hand held shower head if I can, no soap or sometimes a drop of shampoo TMI!! And change gym clothes or undies immediately...
  • Thanks, yall. I did a bit of googling and I found that if you sit around in your sweaty gym clothes, it's a lot like sitting around in a wet swimsuit. Sometimes I come home from the gym and I'm so exhausted I hang out for a bit and watch tv or make lunches for the next day or do light housework or whatever before my shower. Last night, I came home and immediately showered and tried the pj bottoms with no undies. I slept like that all night. I've also been taking cranberry supplements and drinking extra water (I drink a ton of water anyway-I think I might drown!)

    Google is amazing
  • I had bad recurring UTI's for a while- I found that cranberry caps, Jarrow Formula Femdophilus (pricey, but worth it) and lots of water helped significantly. I took the Femdophilus religiously for about 4 months after a round of frequent ones, and weaned myself off and haven't had one in recent memory since.

    Change clothing immediately- sitting in damp can definitely contribute to a UTI (just look at our geriatric population that wears Depends... the folks who change frequently don't get UTI's nearly as often as those who'll sit for hours before changing).

    Good luck!!