I always ran track and cross-country during high school and college.
- As an adult, I’ve continued my love of running and compete in local marathons.
I’ve suffered my share of injuries and setbacks over the years. I’ve tried all different types of training methods. I’ve learned that proper hydration is extremely important. Without sufficient hydration, my performance suffers and I put my body at risk of serious health problems. Water provides energy to cells and cushions my joints. It effectively removes wastes and regulates body temperature. Drinking plenty of water works to lessen the chance of injury and cramping and also speeds the body’s recovery time. I used to be more conscientious about hydrating when running during hot and humid conditions. I wasn’t as concerned about it when the weather was chilly. I’ve learned that the body produces twenty times more heat when you run, no matter the weather conditions. The purpose of sweat is to cool the body, but this also results in the loss of water and electrolytes, such as sodium, calcium, potassium and magnesium. Sacrificing more than two to three percent of body weight through fluid puts you at risk of dehydration. Fatigue, headaches, cramps and an increased heart rate are all indications of dehydration. I now make it a point to drink water before, during and after a run. Following good hydration habits has helped to boost my performance. Temperature, climate, the amount I sweat, speed and distance I run all factor into the amount of water I drink. I take the time to weigh myself before and after a long run to identify how much fluid I’ve lost.