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Olympic Swimmers Are Just Like You — They Pee in the Pool, Too

Florent-Manaudou
Al Bello, Getty Images

The Olympics have been going on for almost a week now, and we’ve finally gotten an answer to the most burning question of the games: do competitive swimmers pee in the pool? According to Carly Geehr, a former member of the US National Swimming Team, they do. A lot.

“Nearly 100 percent of elite competitive swimmers pee in the pool. Regularly. Some deny it, some proudly embrace it, but everyone does,” she wrote on the question-and-answer site Quora.

Heck, even Ryan Lochte makes his bladder gladder in the water.

So do they actually go during a race? Not usually, Geehr said, adding they’re “too tense and too, well, busy” to even think about it.

But before and after? Totally. In fact, before a race, some swimmers even go right there on the deck.

“Adrenaline and nerves wreak havoc on your system, and I knew tons of other swimmers that always, regardless of prior planning, had to pee right before a race,” she said. “[Since] it’s not uncommon to splash yourself before you climb up on the blocks, that extra [water] on yourself and the pool deck affords you an interesting opportunity.”

“As a swimmer,” Geehr said, “you just have to accept that you’re swimming in pee.”

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