At 9 miles, last night was my longest long run yet! And while the weather was perfect, my legs were feeling good, and the stars were pretty much aligned, this run was tough. Just a couple miles in, my mouth started to feel super dry! It was uncomfortable and distracting, and made the miles feel longer.
This is a problem I definitely don’t want to have during the half, so for the next couple weeks, the focus is on hydration. Here’s my game plan:
1. Start hydrating regularly.
It’s not quite enough to chug a couple liters of the good stuff on race day. Low-level dehydration can actually cause your body to retain fluid in order to compensate. If you suddenly water yourself after a long period of not drinking quite enough, your body will hold onto that water, leading to water-retention / bloating. Not the ideal state for a run! You also don’t want to get yourself into a tricky situation by giving your bladder more than it can handle. So, I’m going to get my body back into equilibrium by maintaining hydration well before the race. The old “8 glasses a day” standard is a little outdated, but tools like this water calculator can help you figure out what’s right for you.
2. Mind the heat.
Days are getting longer, shorts are getting shorter, and the highs are getting higher. Sometimes in Cleveland it’s tough to remember what 70° feels like, but at long last it’s finally here (…maybe?). I have to keep in mind that my body loses water way faster in the heat, and I may have to up my intake to avoid a dangerous situation.
3. Do the GU.
Sports drinks and energy gels can be a great way to supercharge your hydration when your body really needs it. We’re trying out GU energy gel, which comes in cool little packets you can carry with you on during your race.
“Do you eat GU? Drink it? Both seem wrong” -K
Whatever you pick as your weapon of choice, just be sure to try it out before race day. I know I don’t want any unexpected surprises tripping me up when it counts!
Got any more tips? Let us know in the comments! Happy summer, Cleveland!