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Before the weather starts getting unbearably hot, we should have a little discussion about heat stroke; who’s more susceptible to it, how to avoid it, and the symptoms. 

Last year, my husband came pretty close to having permanent injuries cause by heat exhaustion/stroke. In the summer, he attended a military training. During a morning PT (physical training) run he began to experience the following symptoms; Rapid heart beat (easy to ignore since heat stroke is often a result of physical activity), excessive sweating followed by barely any sweat at all, confusion, inability to speak coherently, dizziness, fatigue, lack of coordination, and headache. He felt like he was going to faint and began to black out but luckily he was able to make it to a shower with cold water and maintain consciousness while his roommate summoned help. Pretty scary stuff. If he had passed out he would have experienced what the military call “the silver bullet”. This is when a medic wants the most accurate body temperature reading which just so happens to be rectally. You’re welcome for that mental image. Often these symptoms can progress even further to loss of consciousness, coma, and even death.

He was taken to medical where they pumped him full of IV fluids and did test after test. Often times doctors want to keep an eye on vitals to make sure lasting damage in the form of brain damage, internal organ damage, or rhabdomyolysis when muscle tissue breaks down and floods the bloodstream and the kidneys are damaged enough to be unable to remove this waste. You need your kidneys, folks.

There was a bit of concern when my husband called me from training and told me his urine was still incredibly dark. I was shocked that they didn’t want to admit him for overnight observation and told him to go back to medical if his symptoms didn’t improve after further hydration. Luckily, he didn’t have to go back but a complication with one of his tests require medical follow-up once he was home. Don’t worry, he’s fine now.

In the warmer months, you should acclimatize your body to the temperatures outside if that is where you are being active. If you work in an office building that feels like there’s a constant arctic chill in the air, then you will want to slowly introduce your body to hot weather. Exercise in the morning is best or the late evening. Do your best to bring a sports drink with electrolytes and make sure you are well hydrated in the days leading up to hot days. Most importantly use your best judgment. If your area is experiencing record breaking heat don’t go for a run… not even a jog. Take this opportunity to cross train indoors or indulge in a pool workout.

Susceptibility:

  • over the age of 50, but even trained athletes should be aware of their bodies reactions to heat
  • constant exposure to mild temperatures then going to extreme heat
  • current dehydration

What to do if you come across someone you suspect of experiencing heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

  • call 911, whether they are responsive or not and take their temperature if you are able
  • get them into an air conditioned area or at the very least a cooler, shaded area
  • remove excess clothing like shirts, socks, and shoes
  • put ice packs on neck, armpits, and groin (locations of lymph nodes) or get them into an ice bath or cold shower/pool

Note: I am not a medical professional. If you have any concerns related to heat stroke contact your personal physician.

 

Now get out there and enjoy the sunshine safely!

 

 

 

 

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Dear Food Diary, It’s Me EL

In an effort to become more mindful of what I put into my body and how my body reacts I’ve implemented a few new things in my life.

  1. Keeping track of what I eat (less bored, anxious, sad, vengeful, spiteful, etc. aka emotional eating) by using myfitnesspal.com
  2. Cutting out as much sugar as I can. It saddens me to give up Ben and Jerry’s but I think my body will thank me later when I don’t get diagnosed with diabetes in 10+ years.
  3. Actually drinking water. I have been historically bad at this. The best I ever did was when I was pregnant and it was beat into my water-deprived brain that tons of water will be better for me and my adorable spawn.
  4. Using a running coach to be marathon ready. I need someone to tell me how much to run and at what pace.

I figured Marathon Monday was as good as any day to start all these changes. I think the hardest thing to keep up with will be drinking enough water. Myfitnesspal.com helps keep track of water intake, weight, exercises, food intake, and body measurements. I love making lists and keeping track of things so it’s actually fun for me to document everything. It also has a free mobile app so I can keep track of what I eat when I eat out. I think keeping a food diary is useful to people trying to be more healthy because it keeps you honest. I’ve stopped myself from eating things because I didn’t want to have to document it. I didn’t really want that extra tablespoon of mayonnaise on my sandwich anyway.

Myfitnesspal

I’ve found it surprisingly easy to limit my sugar intake since we’ve rid our pantry and refrigerator of all the blatantly sugary foods. But it’s the diabolically sneaky sugary foods you have to be careful of. A lot of food have sugar added… pasta sauces, soups, salad dressings, ketchup… I could go on or you could just double check the ingredients on the labels of every boxed/canned/jarred/bottled food item you own. I think you’d be surprised. I’ll let you know how I feel it’s affected my mood, energy, and weight. So far I’ve lost 2 lbs this week but my weight has insane fluctuations not only day to day but from morning to night. What is that? Water weight? God playing a trick? Mind games? I’m hoping I’ll see a big change in my sleep patterns too. I haven’t been sleeping well which leaves me feeling fatigued during workouts. No bueno. On the bright side it says I should be down 10 lbs about a month from now. Sounds like a good plan.

The running coach has been both a blessing and a curse. It keeps you on track for your running goals but because a lot of my running is on a treadmill, the workout gets boring quick. Anyone have pointers for making treadmill workouts fun not mind numbingly drab?

Have a fit day!

EL

 

 

So… a lot has happened since I last posted.

No, I didn’t run last year’s Marine Corps Marathon. But YES, I did defer it for this year, thus allowing me to skip over the newly enacted lottery. Hooray!

Yes, I finally have a treadmill. It is helping me to keep on track with running. Although, it gets boring. Fast. Let’s say at this stage my running is intermittent. Working on it.

No, I am not a volunteer for my husband’s unit new Family Readiness Officer… yet. But not at the fault of not trying on my behalf. The unit went through some changes like a middle aged woman going through menopause.

No, My husband is STILL (!!!!) not been retrained for a job with the USMC. I mean it’s only been three years. But he is the platoon Sergeant so it’s not like he’s not busy. Some of you are familiar with the term “the big green weenie.” My husband happens to be very familiar. On the plus side he’s been going through the process of applying for an aviator contract for Officer Candidate School. I’ll take bets on which happens first- new MOS training or Officer Candidate Course.

Yes, I’m still a stay at home mom. I’ve been really itching to get a part time job or go back to school but it’s just not a good time yet. Perhaps when our son attends pre-school in the fall. At least I can check off applying for the pre-school off my list. Next up: teaching him to pee in the damn toilet. You’d think it would be more fun for boys. Now if only someone could convince him of that. Geesh.

What does this all mean for me?

I’m going to start eating a no sugar diet. Read: no added sugar; natural sugar from fruits are fine. Although this may start out as a low sugar diet since I’m pretty sure I’m an addict. I guess I have to first convince my husband not to buy cookies and ice cream. I think this is going to help increase my energy because I’ve been super sluggish since turning 30… or maybe it’s since the moment I’ve had to be at the beck and call of a child every moment of every waking hour. It’s a coin toss really.

I also get to start shopping and looking into business licenses for my husband’s house in coastal Carolina. We’re turning it into a short term rental in order to offset the cost of mortgage. So far it’s not. At least everything we’re purchasing will be tax deductible. If we go the route of managing our own property I might take a course or five to make sure I have the professional background to keep it running smoothly.

Too Long…

It’s been way too long since I last posted. Quite frankly I’m embarrassed to admit this… I’ve lost that loving feeling with running lately. An injury set it in motion and boredom and lack of motivation kept it rolling.

I am tired. Just watching my son run around constantly makes me even more tired. What’s wrong with me?!?!

I’ve still been exercising in one way or another almost daily, but running has become elusive. I’m not even sure how to hop back on the wagon right now. I feel like I should try getting outside in the mornings but I am not a morning person. I have a hard time sleeping through the night and I often find myself silently cursing my alarm every morning. Dragging myself out of bed is a feat in itself. It’s always been that way. The thought of getting out of bed and running 5 miles makes me shudder. Not the feeling you want going into a run.

So now I’m at the point where I’m coming up with ideas to reignite some aerobic passion in me. So for everyone who’s reading this and has fallen off their exercise wagon, know that everyone feels burnt out sometimes. Forgive yourself, regroup, and evaluate your routine to find out where things went wrong. I need more variety, both in my routes and type of exercise. Man, I can’t wait to get my treadmill and just hop on whenever I want. That will be coming in the end of July. Who’s excited!? Just me?

 

Pity Party

15 DAYS.

 

That’s the last time my feet have felt the loving caress of my running shoes. The last time I felt the beat of my iPod playlist.

 

Did I give up on my dream to run a marathon? Heck no. But apparently my hip/buttock/lower back needed a break. This is the same problem that I had attributed to running in new shoes but this time I’m 100% sure that this is just because of my lackluster musculoskeletal system. This wasn’t even running/workout strain related. This was an “ugh-my-back-sucks” related injury. It hurt to bend and stretch my hamstrings. A very dull and constant pain made worse when lifting my knee to hip height or doubling over. Pinched nerve? Muscle fatigue? Adrenal gland fatigue? Who knows?

 

Luckily, the pain has finally passed and I can run again! No. Wait. I can run again as soon as my husband returns from his military obligation. Soooo… On Sunday, I can run again! This week has just not been going my way. Weather ruined my plans of driving to see family in Florida which also meant I would not be picking up my new to me treadmill. ***shakes my fist at the heavens***

 

So for the next few days I’ll do some upper body workouts and ease my body back into running. I was doing so well with my mileage and now I feel like I’m back at mile one. I may even purchase some new gear to make me all excited again and put this pity party to rest! Saying extra prayers tonight that nothing like this will happen in the month leading up to the marathon!

Thanks to the long holiday I’m a little late on this post.

 

Monday: 7.02 miles (1:25:12 time/12:08 pace)

Tuesday: Rest

Wednesday: 2.01 mile easy day (21:16 time/10:35 pace)

Thursday: Rest

Friday: XT playing for an hour with my son at the playground (trust me I was running and climbing too)

Saturday: XT racing, climbing at the playground with my son part 2

Sunday: Rest

 

Yes, I should have run this past weekend, but I was enjoying family time and watching my son run with high knees through the grass. He was born to be a runner. I say “ready, set, go!” and he takes off with no particular direction or plan. It’s hilarious.

 

P.S. The Survival Strap Military Care Package has been sent out to a random warrior. Thank you to GG for participating.

In Memorial… giveaway follow up

… And the prize goes to…

 

GG! Be on the lookout for an email from me so that I can get your personal message to a troop of your choosing or a random recipient!

 

Only because you were the only one who participated. I have to admit that I am surprised that only one person decided to take part in my giveaway. While I received a few “likes” which I thought was encouraging, not a lot of participation going on.

If I were to look at this and feel pessimistic, I’d think that people only wanted to participate in giveaways when it’s something they receive themselves rather than them choosing someone else to get a surprise. I could be all “don’t you care about our military?” but I think I’m mostly at fault here. I gave only one way of entering (leaving a comment) and I gave readers three (3!!!!) days to participate on a holiday weekend where I imagine many people travel or have company to entertain. I really couldn’t expect blown away results when I only have a few dozen followers to begin with. So in the event that I do something like this again, I promise to give more time and perhaps do it before a holiday weekend 🙂

But I’m not discouraged and I fully intend on following through with my end of the bargain. I will still send out this care package to a serviceman. Maybe he or she will save a life because I did this. Maybe not. But I’m sure they’ll be grateful that someone back stateside is thinking of them.

I hope everyone had a safe and happy weekend. Now it’s time to fall back into the routine. Godspeed.

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