Preparing for a marathon involves more than constant training so that you can push your physical endurance to the limits. You also need to learn how your body responds to the heat and stress of a marathon. That means finding out how much water or other liquids you should drink during your run.
Dehydration is a Major Problem for Marathon Runners
You don’t need a medical degree to know that most runners worry about dehydration. Unfortunately, they might worry about it enough. Runners collapse from dehydration at just about every major race in the country. Clearly, they haven’t consumed enough liquids.
Try mixing one part Gatorade or some other sports drink with one part water. Anyone who has taken online college courses in health can tell you that the salt in sports drinks allows the hydration to stay in your body instead of letting you sweat it out immediately. The calories can also help fuel your race.
Too Much Hydration?
In your quest to stay hydrated, don’t forget that you can have too much of a good thing. When a runner consumes so much water that her sodium levels fall, it results in a condition called hyponatremia.
Lest you think that you don’t need to worry about hyponatremia, remember that a woman died from the condition during the 2002 Boston Marathon. It doesn’t happen often, but it does happen.
Test your hydration limits by looking for signs of dehydration. Confusion, headaches, thirst, and dizziness can indicate the beginning of dehydration. Severe dehydration is marked by rapid heartbeat and breathing, lack of sweat and a very dry mouth. If you experience these symptoms, stop all physical activity and hydrate to keep yourself healthy.