Scare of a Lifetime – Runner Dehydration or Cancer


UPDATE: (Fall 2015) That was two summers ago and I’m happy to say I’ve had no recurrences…although I’ve heard of other suffering from the same scare.

Two weeks ago for a brief second time stood still and my life seemed to be at the junction in the road where one path lead to happiness and the other to despair.  All I could do was stand there and listen to the sound of my own heart beating.  Once the proverbial clock on the wall began ticking again I had the scare of a lifetime…

After a hot and muggy Friday night run I had dinner with my wonderful wife.  The run in truth was tough but not out of this world challenging.  After dinner we had a few drinks, I did my social media stuff and then we went to bed.  Even thou I was very excited for Saturday to arrive, we were adopting two mini schnauzers, it was easy to fall asleep as I was very tired.

Around 10:30 p.m. I woke up from a pretty solid sleep to go to the bathroom for a routine middle aged potty break.  Stumbling into the restroom I went about my business pretty quickly.  In a state of being half awake/half asleep I got the shock of my life.  In the toilet was a mixture of dark black urine with what I thought were traces of blood.  Standing there staring down at the poisonous appearing mixture in the bowl I was for moments speechless. The air felt virtually removed from my lungs but some how I managed to call for my wife asking her to come and take a look.  Michele was a bit taken back as I woke her from her sleep, you see I’m kind of a shy bathroom business guy.  Coming on to the scene, she instantly knew that if I was summoning her from the bathroom something was up.

Michele was immediately caught off guard.  She confirmed what I had seen.  There was a real toxic looking mess in the toilet and it was not normal.

Urine_Chart(the true darkness and vial appearance of what we saw is not on this chart)

We considered going to the emergency room, but after a few Google searches we decided to hold off and see what my next bathroom visit brought.  With real fear and concern gripping me I chugged a bottle of water and some juice as Michele read off things like bladder/kidney infection, cancer and a thing called Runners hemturia.

In the past I had heard of runners in extreme endurance races having blood issues in their urine, but that did little to comfort me.  My run was only 7 miles, nothing like Hardrock, Leadville, Western States or Badwater.  With a lot on my mind I laid back down and tried to get some sleep.  An hour or so later I felt “the need” and with much concern I stumbled my way to the restroom again.  When things began to  flow I looked down to see “what was going on” again I was shocked at what I saw.

My urine was clear…  The rest of the weekend I settled into a routine of drinking water/Gatorade and hoping each trip to the bathroom was routine.  More specifically a release of clear or normal urine color.  Yet in the back of my mind, I wondered what was going on inside me.

Tuesday brought a doctors visit and I hoped an answer.  The doctor examined me and listened to my history.  After finding out that I was a runner he asked about my running distances and events then reassured me that in his opinion it was good that I came in but he was sure it would be running related.  Taking no chances, he ordered a full series of tests and sent me to the labs.  After giving blood and urine there was nothing to do but wait and pray.

More information on blood in urine and what you should do.  (#1 don’t ignore it.)

Then the phone call came.  “Hello, Doctor T. has reviewed the tests and asked me to relay to you that all the tests came back negative.”

Negative results Sign

That was the best news I had heard in………maybe my lifetime.


  • Troy

    Glad all is well!