As a runner of 18 months or so, I've been asked a lot of questions. Not all of them are of the quizzical nature of folks who don't understand why someone runs without being chased--you know the "why?" "where do you get the time?" "do you do that on purpose?" and the such.
Today I was asked by two lovely young ladies that I work with how you get to the point to run a 5K. One of them runs 2.5 to 3 miles a few times a week--she's pretty much ready! And the other doesn't run at all--I hooked her up with the Couch to 5K program. We stood in one of their cubicles and talked running for 15 or 20 minutes and muscle cramps came up. Of course my first question was, "HOW MUCH WATER DO YOU DRINK?" Followed by "do you eat salty foods or drink electrolyte drinks?" We talked about dehydration and over hydration. Then I left work in a good mood because I ended the day talking about my passion!
When I got home, I laced up my Brooks and went out for a nice easy 5 miles around home. About a mile and a half in I noticed my lower legs were kind of sore. The muscles on the outside of calves were tight. I kept on running and at the turn around I still wasn't feeling it. Then it hit me! I preach hydration but forget to actually hydrate myself! It's a classic case of do as I say and not as I do.
It really hit me tonight when my Mom sent me a text message to ask if I heard about the terrible tragedy at the Detroit Marathon. I told her that I had and the three people that passed away had sudden cardiac arrest and I wondered if the were dehydrated or over hydrated. Being a mother, she promptly asked me how much and what I drink as a runner! I explained to her that I try to keep myself hydrated and I watch my electrolyte intake when I'm running and when I'm not. I couldn't tell her I haven't been drinking nearly enough!
So I guess I need to make a conscious effort to drink more.
And please keep the family and friends of the three lost runners from Detroit in your prayers.
Stay safe, keep your soles to the ground, and keep moving forward! (And don't forget to drink!)