Running events such as half marathons and marathons offer a wide range of health benefits, including giving better self-esteem because of your good feelings over completing such a challenge. However, these activities also possess physical health risks, including many things that could send you to an urgent care center. While ankle sprains or serious knee scrapes are a concern, a potentially ignored risk is dehydration. You'll sweat considerably over the course of the running event, especially if it's hot outside. In order to avoid landing in an urgent care center for IV fluids because of severe dehydration, here are some strategies that you should use.
Start Drinking In Advance
Don't wait until you're at the running event to start drinking water. In order to really hydrate your body to offset the significant amount of water that you'll lose while you run, it's imperative that you begin drinking well in advance of the event's start time. The exact amount that you drink depends on a wide range of factors, including your size and your body's overall hydration level. The key takeaway to remember is that you should frequently have a glass or bottle of water in your hand leading up to the event.
Take Advantage Of Each Hydration Station
When you're focused on achieving a personal best or competing against friends who are also taking part in the running event, you may be tempted to ignore the hydration stations that are set up along the route. The rationale behind such a mindset is that if you can save a few seconds by running straight through each station, these seconds can add up over the course of the event. However, this approach can leave your body dehydrated and in need of a visit to an urgent care center — and perhaps not even able to complete the event. Always grab water at every station you pass.
Avoid Dehydrating Foods Afterward
For many people, a large and unhealthy meal is a tradition upon the completion of a running event. While this idea might be enticing, what you eat and drink immediately after the event could increase your risk of dehydration. Ideally, you should continue to drink water after the event to replace the water you lost through sweat. Foods such as beer and salty things such as burgers and fries can dehydrate your body. If you notice the symptoms of dehydration at any point, such as a headache, make sure to visit your local urgent care center.