Angela and I took off for Encinitas to stop at Nytro before our run. I decided to cave and buy a fanny pack, I mean hydration belt. I have avoided this device at all costs, opting for water fountains instead. Unfortunately, when you often run on trails there are very few fountains at your disposal. I finally hunkered down and spent the $45 on the Fuel Belt brand and strapped it around my waste. I bought the kind with 2 little bottles, rather than 4. I could not quite commit to the 4 bottle tool-belt-like contraption.
With one bottle of sports drink and one bottle of water, we set off. Keep in mind, San Diego has been blazing hot lately and Angela did not bring anything for herself. We ran along the dirt and sand trail that follows the ocean at Torrey Pines which I feel is the most scenic trail here in San Diego. We were in heaven, just floating along effortlessly doing our usual comparison of the beauty in San Diego to Chicago. We always laugh and joke about our journey to California and all of the crazy moments along the way when we wanted to rip each other’s hair out. Luckily, happy moments far outweighed the moments of insanity.
Torrey Pines - This is where I run. Isn't it fabulous?Here and there I sipped on my water bottles and felt okay, mostly hungry. Angela on the other hand was quickly fading. She didn’t drink a lot of water prior to our run and only had a few tiny sips along the way. By mile 12 she told me to go on ahead without her. I made it to the car at mile 13.5 and decided to stop my run a little short so I could grab Ang and then quickly get some food in both of us. My stomach was rumbling and I had visions of burritos and cookies dancing in my head.
When I picked her up along side the road she was in worse shape than when I left her. We ended up taking our food to go and drove home while she was keeled over in pain on the passenger seat. The moment she walked in the door she was vomiting like nobody’s business.
She continued to hurl for a few hours and couldn’t keep any fluids down. I say hurl, because it best describes her situation; it was rough. I made her a drink with an electrolyte tablet and she was finally able to get down one tiny sip after another. If this didn’t work, the next step would be an Intravenous intervention at an urgent care clinic. Luckily, she was able to skip the IV.
I honestly had no idea this could happen from dehydration. This was a great reminder (sorry, Ang) to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate before, during and after.
I thought this next tid bit was interesting, especially considering this is the method I use to hydrate.
The most recent guidelines from the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races state:
"Try to drink to thirst. This advice seems way too simple to be true; however, physiologically the new scientific evidence says that thirst will actually protect athletes from the hazards of both over and underdrinking by providing real time feedback on internal fluid balance. If you are not thirsty, try to refrain from drinking. Drinking when thirsty is supposed to discourage over-hydrating, which can lead to hyponatremia, and prevent dehydration. "
Also, a key point: During long runs, runners should drink a sports drink, and not just water, after 30 minutes.
One size apparently does not fit all when it comes to hydration. I certainly don’t want to end up like Angela did, so you will see me out there with my nifty fuel belt, truckin' along from now on!
Good luck on the rest of your hot August runs. CHUG, CHUG, CHUG!