Any training run that starts at 3am has the potential to suck.  I experienced the suck on Sunday July 27th.  The plan was for me to meet Martin at his house at 3am and we were going to run 15 miles over to Little Cove Park and run another 11 miles with larger group.  It all sounded great but my actual execution wasn’t so great.

I ran 12 in the heat on Saturday.  Well, I wanted to do this and if I had been training more consistently it probably wouldn’t have been an issue.  After the 12 miler on Saturday I drank lots but reflecting back I was drinking tea.  I didn’t realize until a few hours before I went to bed that my pee was still dark yellow.  So, I started pounding water.  I drank enough water in a one hour period of time that I started peeing clear before bed.  I managed to get into bed about 9:30-9:45.  That gave me a whopping four hours of sleep.  I had to get up at 2am to get my crap together and drive to Martin’s.

2am I  get up and go pee and check the color.  It wasn’t clear.  But, it was close so I figured I would be ok.  Knowing I was going to need the water, I created a drop bag and left it at the 6.5 mile mark of our run.  I went through my normal routine and got my stuff together and headed out.  As soon as I walked outside, I knew I was in for a long run.  At 2:30am it was hot and sticky.  The temp was 77 and I later learned the “Real Feel” temp was 83.  I met Martin and we headed out on our cross Huntsville trek.  There’s some interesting folks out on the streets at 4am in Huntsville, AL.  They did give us plenty to look and talk about.  After an hour we made it to my drop bag and Martin wasn’t interested.  He was just going to walk while I refilled one of my bottles.  When I get to the bag, it had been dumped out.  Why does someone dump out the contents of a runners drop bag.  The only thing I could figure is that someone was watching me when I stashed it in the bushes and thought I had some drugs or something in it.  They didn’t take anything.  They just dumped it all out of the bag.  Well, I cleaned up the mess and mixed me up some Powerade while I listened to Martin make fun of me for not premixing the Powerade.  He didn’t know I only brought it because I was worried about my hydration.  The drop bag idea was a last minute attempt for me to survive the run.

I’m refueled and off we go.  We run a small clip  2-3 miles to the base of a small mountain we need to cross over.  I’m already suffering.  Overheating is my main symptom.  I’m still trying to figure out which causes which.  If I drink plenty of water, so much that I can’t be dehydrated, would I still over heat?  Or, does the water intake not really decide if you overheat or not?  I’ve got some work to do on this one.  Believe me, I’ll know before the Georgia Jewel 100.  Regardless, I was overheating so I walked the entire climb.  When I got to the top I was hopeful I could run down the other side.  And I was able to run most of it but I was still suffering.  I was really close to not being able to run at all.  I kept overheating.  I was lucky that we only had about 3 miles left after I got to the bottom of the hill.  I ran walked the last 3 miles into the parking lot where we met a huge group that was planning on running a 11 mile course with two big hills.  My wife was coming to run the 11 with me.  I told here I was done.  I had to stop and start recovering.  While sitting at the back of car drinking water had a few small cramps in my legs.  Nothing severe but I knew I was close cramping up.

I used Salt Sticks on this run.  I took them 2-3 an hour for 3 hours.  I was really surprised that my electrolyte balance was so off.  I drank Skratch and one bottle of Powerade.  This is my 1st run using Salt Sticks and my first impression is it’s not the right electrolyte mix for me.  I’ve traditionally used S-Caps and I rarely have issues with cramping.  Especially at such a sort distance.

You can find the somewhat pathetic garmin data here.

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