Sharing What I’ve Learned Out There

July 12th, 2010 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

I’ve been running for years.  This weekend, I was away and ran in a new place.  I had mapped out a planned route on gmaps pedometer (my favorite website, I think maybe ever) and even came close to following it!

Along the way, I had some time to ponder what I’ve learned about running over the course of many hundreds of miles out there over the years.  It isn’t much, but this here is some solid information you should have if you want to get out there for a walk or a jog.

1.       You never regret taking water with you.

I have often come back with water left in my bottle and I never ever regret that.  It is much much easier to have additional water than to be out of water.  Granted, most parks and playgrounds have water fountains but you can’t always be guaranteed of that.  So, unless you know where your next water fountain is, and unless you know that the fountain is operational, bring enough for the run.  Bring more when it’s hot.  Bring even more when you’re running in the middle of a summer day.  If you are asking yourself whether or not you have enough water, you probably don’t have enough water.  

Bring more.

2.       Always take double the sugar you think you’ll need. 

I have blogged about this before, but seriously, you need to have enough glucose with you when you run.  And then some. 

Even if you eat before you go out for a run, you still need to have sugar with youEvery run.  You don’t know what’s going to happen out there.  You may have a surprise attack of energy that launches you into hypersonic speed—be ready for that unexpected surge of energy to ask for fuel.  You may hit a microclimate of heat or a hill higher than you remembered it; be ready to continue on with your run even after you’ve eaten the first round of glucose.  Running with extra glucose helps you keep going.

When you have sticky fingers, your extra water will get you a few drops to wash off with.  But beware of checking those fingertips—the sticky glucose will give you a false meter reading!

If you’re looking for a trash can to throw away your sticky Gu packet or crumpled Ziploc bag, head to a park or ATM machine—most of those will have trash cans.  You can also spot trash cans at a lot of bus stops. 

Let your mind wander as you run and keep your eyes open.  (If you come across the answer to “who empties those bus stop trash cans” please let me know.)

3.       The air quality around a farm or stable of any kind is treacherous.

I really shouldn’t need to explain this one.  I will say, however, that this weekend I ran an additional mile because I was so distracted by the smells emanating from the acres of large (ahem) animals that I missed the street where I was supposed to turn.  One can only breathe through your mouth so long.  (And dear me what are you inhaling?! ) 

Gmaps hadn’t told me about those animals.  Eww.

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