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Lessons From the Peachtree

A Brookhaven neighbor shares his experiences and chronicles his experience (and trip to the ER) during the Peacthree Road Race and lessons he learned. Organizers said it was hottest starting temperature since 1997

As I lay here in my sofa, resting from the race. I reflect on what happened to me.

I've trained consistently for four years now, and was sub-seeded for the Peachtree Road Race. My PR [personal record] on a 10K is 41 minutes and I was expecting to improve that to about 40 or less.

I really enjoy the Peachtree. All the people and Independence Day make it very special. I'm one of those crazy ones that blast through the downhills with a smile on my face. Yesterday was no exception.

However, all of a sudden I'm on the ground - surrounded by police and race officials - wondering what happened and where exactly in the race I was. 

Last thing I remember, I was passing the five-mile marker. According to my Garmin, I fell at 5.89 miles, on the final stretch of the race.

I guess I pushed too hard.

Paramedics took me to the ER at the Atlanta Medical Center. I received oxygen, an EKG and plenty of fluids. Fortunately I was just severely dehydrated, nothing more. Heart was strong and blood work came out alright. I was relatively quickly discharged.

What happened then?

My first mistake was not hydrating well enough in advance. I should have drank more water and electrolyte fluids the day before. Instead, I had too much soda and caffeinated drinks.

Second mistake: I didn't drink but water in the morning. Ironically, I had prepared a bottle of electrolyte fluids the night before and left it in the refrigerator. It was still there on my return.

Third mistake: I didn't carry my usual belt with bottles that I use on races. Yes, I'm one of those geeks that even though I'm sub-seeded, still carry a bottle when I run. But there's a reason for that. I dehydrate quickly and for some weird reason, I ignored my normal protocol and decided to rely entirely on race provided fluids.

Turns out I'm not well trained in getting enough fluids in me with paper cups. And water alone just didn't cut it for me.

Probably another mistake was trying too hard in a race that was evidently too hot for a PR.

Next year, I'll be about the only sub-seeded with a belt of fluids and if it gets too hot, I'll just enjoy the run and forget about the clock.

We learn something every day!

Cheers!

 

Follow Christian on Twitter @christianoliver

Stephanie L. Arnold July 05, 2011 at 04:49 PM
Thanks Christian for sharing your story with us!

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