Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Humbled by the Heat

I know, I know…I live in the south. It’s H-O-T during the summer and often extremely humid and at age 31 I should know what to expect by now. However, my running (and general endurance) feels like it’s taking a major hit and last week as I felt like I was crawling back to my car after boot camp I wondered if any of that would return to “normal”. I thought, “I am going to begin marathon training sometime next month…am I f-ing crazy?”

This sentiment was also exacerbated by feeling like I was on the brink of passing out while I was at boot camp. This is the 2nd time something like this has happened within the past 30 days and it (understandably) makes me frustrated and low-grade nervous.

The 1st time it happened, I could tell my heart rate was way too high and that in the 100-degree heat, my blood sugar had TANKED. All I could think of was that I was going to pass out in downtown Birmingham with no ID (I know, BAD BAD), no phone and no $$ and that I was going to end up in an ambulance on the way to the county hospital. All I had on me was my water bottle and my car key b/c since I am running to boot camp, I want to keep things “light” and I also don’t want to leave a “pouch” of things on the side where they might “grow legs”. (Not that I think it would happen, but it MIGHT and since having my purse stolen a couple years ago, I am hyper-vigilant of that sort of thing.) I literally stumbled/crawled over to the trainer at the end of class, as my vision was starting to go fuzzy, and luckily a peppermint was all it took to bring me back to the land of the living. Of course, then I had to walk the mile back to my car feeling like absolute garbage which sucked. (In his defense, the trainer did offer me a ride, but I felt like I just needed to walk it off and I did take it pretty slow on the way back.)

After that incident, I started bringing my handheld (instead of just a normal nalgene bottle), with my ID and sports jelly beans tucked into the outside pocket and filling the bottle with a mix of water and G2 since I know I am heavy, salty sweater. I also do make sure to eat a little something (usually a banana or a couple of crackers) about 45 minutes before I head out for my run to help with my blood sugar. I am already pretty good at hydrating during the day, limiting myself to 1 caffeinated beverage in the morning and drinking about 6 or 7 12oz cups of water during the day. This seemed to work for a couple of weeks...

Last week, I wasn’t at the point of blurry vision but I could feel that my heart rate was abnormally high (for me) and that if I continued to push myself, I was going to cross the line into similar territory. Several of us were not feeling great and I as I was drinking between sets feeling like I was about to puke, the girl next to me turned to me and said “I feel like I’m going to throw up.” I ended up having to do a run 1 block, walk 1 block pattern on the way back because I could feel my heart rate climbing uncomfortably.

I would be more worried (and maybe should be anyway?) if this were happening during my runs but it’s not and my runs are generally going anywhere from 40-60 minutes these days (about 3-4 days a week) often in the same kind of heat. Amy and I ran in 100 degree temps last week and I was sweaty and exhausted but otherwise fine. Matt and I are also taking the dogs out for 45-60 minute walks 4-5 days a week and I’m going to yoga one evening a week right now and while I am sweating and working, they are not at the same heart rate intensity as running and boot camp. I’m thinking I need to evaluate what I’m eating before class and maybe try to eat a little closer to when I am about to leave. (Or even drink one of those Gatorade perform drinks right before I leave for my run). I told Matt as we were walking last night, I sometimes consider scrapping the pre and post run and just driving to class b/c of the heat but then I remind myself it’s ONLY a mile each way and I like the time to decompress. The run TO class never feels painful either; it’s just the run back that often sucks.

Anyone else experience anything like this?

I was really hoping to put a new strategy to the test this week, but thunderstorms have rolled into the area and class is now cancelled tonight. I am really disappointed b/c I look forward to the sweat and the workout! Is it sad that I am thinking about recreating this workout at home? I could run the .75 mile loop of my street, go home and do a Jillian Michaels “Shred” video and then go out and run one more loop. It won’t matter if it’s just raining out! Anything to avoid going to the gym. And I already have plans to run tomorrow and Thursday so I don’t want to do 3 days of “just running” in a row.

1 comment:

  1. Good for you for even trying! I'm just avoiding any sort of exertion because I can't handle the heat and humidity. I miss being able to run in relative comfort!