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I’m pretty sure my hypothalamus hates me, because I can’t control my body temperature to save my life. Sadly, I mean that literally.
(Consider this your first official South Carolina update. Extra bonus points if anyone actually remembers the band in the title of this post.)
Those of you that have had the pleasure of racing with me at venues such as the Killington Beast (or Ultra), or even floating down the Deerfield river (GAP!) have probably seen first hand how horrible I am at being able to maintain body heat. I pretty much shivered my way through all 15+ miles of each Beast (thankfully the first half of the Ultra that year was warm.) The GAP incident was the scariest of all, having moved past the shivering violently stage into the delirious/I don’t remember what happened/my legs stopped working phase of hypothermia. I’m almost always cold, winters and air conditioning are my nemesis. And while people always seem to point fingers and say it’s because I have no body fat, I assure you I typically hover around the 20% mark…more than enough to be in the “healthy” and thus “warm” zone.
And now here we are in sunny South Carolina. 14 full days in, enough to slowly transition out of that “are we on vacation?” phase and more into the “we actually live here, better have the mail forwarded” phase.
(excuse me while I pause to fill out that mail forwarding form…)
As luck would have it, we picked the perfect time to move, as temperatures this week have soared into the high 90’s, with heat indexes well over 100 degrees. It’s hot; really, stifling, hot.
But don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. I’ve been looking forward to the days where you have to worry about burning your hands on the car steering wheel. After the winter we had in New England, it’s nice to not be freezing.
That said, I am struggling to acclimate to running in this weather. It’s been a massive shock to my body…and quite a humbling experience too. Not even two miles into a run I feel like I’ve been sucker punched by the heat and humidity. I find myself sucking wind and willing myself not to throw up. I imagine this is the norm for anyone transitioning from the Vermont Tundra to the South Carolina heat, but it seems to be hitting me far worse than Geoff.
Yesterday we headed out to the local trail system, the “Hulk”. It’s about a 6+ ish mile loop. And by loop, I mean mountain bike switchbacks and hairpin turns that will leave you dizzy for at least the first mile.
But I’ve got to give them credit, they really utilized that plot of land to get as much mileage as possible out of it. The constant twists and turns never let you really open up and run, but they are fantastic for training the stabilizing muscles and working on trail balance. Plus, while very tiny, there are a few hills to really engage the legs.
Anyway. Mile 1 was a breeze…unfortunately without an actual breeze. And then the proverbial wall hit me, with its friend, the blanket. Yes, the blanket, a new term I’m adding to the running dictionary. It quite literally felt like someone wrapped my head in a giant, fleece blanket and I couldn’t breathe. The wall and the blanket combined forces to make me dizzy, weak, and wondering how in the hell I ran 50+ miles just a few weeks ago, when today 2 single miles felt like the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
There really is no point to this post, other than to say it’s really, ridiculously hot outside here in Myrtle Beach. So I bought a 78 oz water bottle and I’ve taken up CrossFit.
And I’m spending an awful lot of time here:
Work with the adventure you’re given. Life is good.