When you run at a fast pace and increase your heart and breathing rate, you sweat and lose fluids. If you don't properly replenish fluid losses, you're more likely to experience thirst and dry mouth. Drinking enough water before, during and after a run helps keep your mouth moist. If chronic dry mouth interferes with running, consult a physician.
Most people underestimate how much water they need to drink while running. Understand your particular hydration needs to help prevent dry mouth and dehydration. Speedy runners usually need more water than slow runners to replace a high volume of sweat loss that slow runners may not experience during the same run-time. If a person usually loses 2 pounds, or 32 ounces, during a marathon, it means she'll need to drink approximately 32 ounces during her run to replenish fluid losses and minimize dehydration and dry mouth.
Create a Hydration Plan
To find out how much water you need to drink to avoid dehydration-related dry mouth, determine your sweat rate. Weigh yourself without clothes. Put your regular gear on and go for a run. Don't drink during the dehydration test. When you return home, strip down, dry off and weigh yourself again. Note the amount of weight loss in ounces to find out how much you should drink when running to help keep your mouth moist and prevent dehydration. According to the BoiseRunWalk website, drinking six to eight ounces of fluid every 20 minutes of long-distance running generally helps keep you hydrated.
Drink Before Lacing Up
To minimize dry mouth and dehydration during longer runs, especially when temperature and humidity are high, drink 10 to 20 ounces an hour or two before you lace up. A properly hydrated runner will also perform better and even run faster than a dehydrated competitor, according to Human Kinetics.
Chewing gum will not keep your mouth moist when running. In fact, it becomes a choking hazard if you accidentally swallow it. Likewise, breathing through your nose when running will not keep your mouth moist. While breathing through your nose may help you when temperatures and humidity are low, it is very uncomfortable to breathe through your nose when you quicken your running pace and breathing rate. According to James Shaffrath, MD, when you’re breathing four to six times greater than your normal rate, you must breathe through your mouth.