The zoo and a run for two

25 Jun

On Saturday we headed out bright and early for a day trip to the Bronx Zoo with our friends and their little girl. None of us had been there before and we were all just as excited as the 3 year old!

Bronx Zoo 1 rbbI was especially excited to see the giraffes. Maybe I have an affinity for all things tall?

giraffeIt’s hard to tell, but there are baboons in this photo, along with the Nubian ibex. We ate lunch next to these guys.

ibexThere were so many things to see. We were there the whole day and we only got to see about half of the exhibits and animals!

zooanimalsIt’s hard to pick a favorite, but I did really enjoy the butterfly garden and I was pretty amazed by the tigers. It was truly a fun day and I’m so glad we took the trip!

***

Mark and I both had our long runs planned for Sunday morning, so we made sure to hydrate, ice, compress, and get some rest after all that walking! When the morning came, we slowly got ourselves out of bed, packed a cooler with runfreshments, strapped the bikes to the car, and went to the nearby bike trail.

First, I biked while Mark ran 3.5 miles. Since it was a pretty casual ride, this loosened my tired legs up. After a little stretching, fueling, and trespassing borrowing a construction site porta-potty, Mark hopped on the bike while I ran 9 miles.

runbikeloveBy the time it was my turn, it was after 10:30 AM and the sun was getting high and hot. I started out feeling pretty good and keeping a comfortable sub-9:00 pace. After the midpoint, I started to struggle. Despite sipping on nuun and water, downing a Gu gel, and pouring water on my head, the heat and humidity really got to me. I didn’t feel like I was in some physical shut down mode – just very hot and sweaty, so I kept going at a much slower pace and just took it easy.

hotrunI didn’t start to feel absolutely miserable until after I finished those 9 miles. The PowerICE electrolyte freeze pop was pure bliss (even though it was lime flavored) and I wish I had about a dozen more of them. I worked on cooling myself down and getting some recovery fuel into my body for a while.

My body felt really weak – I actually fell asleep on the 2 mile car ride home. As soon as we got home, I spent some time under the nice cold water from the hose. Then…I threw up. Twice. (You’re welcome for that.) After some breakfast,  more nuun, and a couple of short naps, I started to feel better.

I’m not a doctor, but I think I ended up drinking too much water and not getting enough electrolytes and fuel during the run in proportion to how much sweat I was losing. (If you’re a doctor or expert and want to help me figure out what went wrong, by all means please email me because the literature on dehydration vs. overhydration is really confusing.)

I’m usually pretty cautious about planning runs in the heat, but this run apparently had to teach me a few things:

  1. Start your run as early as possible to avoid getting the sun’s most direct rays and postpone it if you need to
  2. Don’t wear a black top, no matter how thin and moisture-wicking the fabric is
  3. Skip the compression socks if the heat and humidity are so high
  4. Don’t experiment with putting nuun in one bottle and water in the other on a long run in high heat and humidity
  5. Bring double energy gels on the run, just in case

And that is how my run started happy and ended miserably. If you’ve had a similar experience before, feel free to share!

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4 Responses to “The zoo and a run for two”

  1. Sarah @ Sweet Miles June 25, 2013 at 11:50 am #

    Aww girl!! That sounds miserable!! BUT you’ll have an even better run next time now that you’ve learned a few lessons 🙂 I always think wearing compression socks is a good idea when it’s hot too, but then I quickly realize how much HOTTER it makes me!! I’m so sorry you got sick!! It’s amazing how heat can really take everything out of you. It can be so frustrating!!

    • Nikki June 25, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

      Heat sucks. Give me back my below freezing winter runs! I love summer but it makes it so hard to enjoy running sometimes.

  2. christine (@Albany_Wayfarer) June 25, 2013 at 10:08 pm #

    I haven’t made it to the bronx zoo yet either. I’ve heard great things about it. Sorry to hear that you were dehydrated/overhydrated. Summer running is tough! Very cool though that you and your husband take turns biking & running 🙂

    • Nikki June 26, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

      It’s a really nice zoo, we had a blast. I recommend it!

      Running while my husband bikes along is one of my favorite things. 🙂

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