1

Abandoning a Long Run (Read 666 times)

    I'm training for my first marathon (Steamtown on 10/7) and was scheduled to run 15 miles today. About 6.5 miles in, I became dehydrated, despite all of my efforts to hydrate, and had to abandon the run. I was completely disoriented and my partner had to pretty much force me to get up from a bench and get home. Basically, I know I did the right thing. It took me the majority of the day to get back to any sort of normal. Here's my concern: how will this impact my preparedness for and/or performance on race day? The schedule has looked like this over the past few weeks into next: 16, 21, 10, 15, 22 (and then taper.) I have completed: 16, 20, 10, 7 and then am looking at next week. I have been pretty much on target for my weekday runs. If this had happened any earlier, I don't think it would have impacted my confidence so dramatically. But I feel like my head's taken a real beating here.
    2008 Goals
  • Run 1250 miles
  • Get down to 135!
  • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon
    • The 15-miler that you had trouble with is way less important than the 20-miler you already finished and the 20-miler you have next week. Everyone has bad days and bad runs. Learn from the experience, and be well prepared for next week's long run. When that run goes well, your confidence will be back in spades.
      How To Run a Marathon: Step 1 - start running. There is no Step 2.
        have to agree with berner - the 20s are more important. make sure that you hydrate properly the day before your long run and don't leave it till the morning of your run (ideally you need to make sure you are properly hydrated all the time but clearly thats a lot harder!) better this happened now than on race day.
          Thanks guys. It's amazing what one run can do to your mental state. Having slept on it, I have a little more perspective and can definitely understand what you're saying. Here's to more water! (Actually, here's to not forgetting that one alcoholic drink is okay, but two is too many and that the sun can still be blazingly hot in the Northeast in September.)
          2008 Goals
        • Run 1250 miles
        • Get down to 135!
        • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon

        • A Dance with Monkeys

            How do you know you were dehydrated? This is an important question.
              Trent, good question. I doubted it at first, though my partner kept insisting I was showing mild signs of dehydration that weren't going to get better. I was incredibly irritable and contrary and couldn't make decisions, refusing to do anything that would help the situation. Example: we were sitting next to a fast-food restaurant in the blazing sun and she kept saying "Let's just go in there and get a drink." and I wouldn't move. I had terrible leg cramps, was weak and when I kept telling my partner to go on, I could get home, literally couldn't get up at one point. I was sweating profusely at the beginning of the run, more than usual, and by the end wasn't sweating much at all. Finally after we walked home (the the part of the loop I was at was about 1 m from home, point to point) I started drinking, had some soup, and still didn't pee for about 4-5 hours. I had a terrible headache the rest of the day. What killed me was that I was drinking during the run! I suppose it could have been heat exhaustion as well, or another form of illness, but it was still one of those "Thank God for cell phones, damn I missed a long run!" moments. Edited: My partner compared it to the moment in Running on the Sun when Lisa Smith-Batchen keeps insisting she took the salt pill, though much less severe. I was really confused and convinced I was doing everything I needed to do to stay healthy.
              2008 Goals
            • Run 1250 miles
            • Get down to 135!
            • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon
              • This post was an accident. I tried to think of something good to say in it.
                2008 Goals
              • Run 1250 miles
              • Get down to 135!
              • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon

              • A Dance with Monkeys

                  What did your first urine look like after the run?
                    Very dark, almost cloudy.
                    2008 Goals
                  • Run 1250 miles
                  • Get down to 135!
                  • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon

                  • A Dance with Monkeys

                      You do need to work on your hydration strategy. Drinking loads before the run will just make you pee lots before and early in the run, and will not necessarily reduce the risk of dehydration. You need to practice drinking adequately while you run, and taking in extra salt if you are sweating lots or out running for more than 3-4 hours. You should determine your sweat rate and try to match that by constantly taking in fluids during your run, but also work to avoid overdrinking (i.e., drinking more than you are sweating). You can determine your sweat rate by weighing yourself nekkid before and after a one-hour run. For every ound you have lost, that is about a half liter/ half quart you have sweated. Make sure also to consider what you drank. So if you drank 16 oz and lost 2 lbs, then your sweat rate was about 46 oz/hr.
                        Thanks, Trent. I am definitely examining what went wrong here and will continue to work on hydration. This is not an experience I'd like to repeat ever again ever.
                        2008 Goals
                      • Run 1250 miles
                      • Get down to 135!
                      • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon

                      • A Dance with Monkeys

                          Good luck. This will get easier as the weather cools. Oh, and if you do measure your sweat rate, make sure to put on clothes after you weigh yourself the first time and before you go out running. Wink
                            And make sure you always have someone with you on your long run. They may have saved your life...

                            Roads were made for journeys...