I always like to take a look back at races or long runs to reflect on what I can improve on next time. While I really enjoyed the Charles Street 12, there were definitely some lessons learned.
- If you are going to wear your Garmin during the race, turn it on.
- It’s okay to run with a friend who is at a different pace, but once your body starts to reject that pace, listen to your body. Your friend will understand because they get it…they run too.
- Always be sure to warm up before and stretch afterwards.
- Know the warning signs of dehydration, which was the most important lesson learned of the day.
So, let’s talk about dehydration and how to stay hydrated.
One of my friends who ran the Charles Street 12 ended up getting dehydrated. Towards the end of her run, she was very thirsty and felt like she couldn’t get enough water. As we hung out after the race, she started to feel lightheaded and nauseous. Her skin was pale and clammy and she had goosebumps (yes, I took a pic of my sick friend just for the blog….hey…she was too sick to care at the time). 😉
Other signs of dehydration include dry mouth; headache; reduced urine output, with dark yellow urine. Symptoms of moderate dehydration include extreme thirst; dry appearance inside the mouth; decreased urination, or lightheadedness. Serious dehydration can lead to cramps, chills and disorientation. (http://running.about.com/od/illnessesandrunning/p/dehydration.htm)
Sometimes water is just not enough. During long runs, especially in hot humid conditions, you should also consume electrolytes. I like to add Gatorade (not the low-cal one) to my water during long runs (2 oz to 6 oz of water). You can also add electrolyte tablets or power to your water or even salt tablets. Oh, and what about potassium?
Potassium is a mineral that works with sodium (also a mineral) to balance the fluids and electrolyte levels in your body. And since steady fluid levels help to regulate your heartbeat and prevent muscles from cramping, potassium is of particular importance to runners. “Think of it as the gatekeeper for fluid movement in and out of the body’s cells,” says Lisa Dorfman, R.D., a sports nutritionist at the University of Miami’s athletic department. http://www.runnersworld.com/nutrition-runners/mmm-potassium
Don’t worry though, if you’re eating your fruits and veggies, chances are, you don’t need to add a potassium supplement to your routine.
Since potassium plays such a key role in hydration, runners might be worried about taking in enough. Relax. Potassium is found in so many common foods that supplementation is rarely necessary to meet the Daily Value of 3,500 milligrams. High-mileage runners may want to take in closer to 4,700 milligrams (you can safely ingest three times that per day), but these amounts are easy to attain by eating a varied diet that consists of lots of fresh, unprocessed foods.
So, my dear beautiful runners, keep your sexy body hydrated and make sure you keep your electrolytes balanced! If you want to check out some hydration products, I’ve added them to my recommended list (http://astore.amazon.com/sowhiru-20?_encoding=UTF8&node=1)
Next run – Supposed to be track workout tomorrow, but I have a calf injury. I will know more after my appointment with the orthopedic tomorrow…wish me luck!