As I slog along, thankful that the months of acclimatisation appear to be paying off, irritated that the best I can do is a sub 13 minute mile and downright pissed off at those few Corniche goers, in 3/4 length shorts (or incomprehensibly – tracksuit bottoms) breeze past me with not one bead of sweat on their pretty little heads I dare to utter one phrase -“Fuck Dude”. This will be forever known as the ‘fuck dude run’.
I knew this was going to be hot, when you can see the humidity mingling amongst the buildings in the dusk light, you know it is going to be hot. But I was determined. This run was needed, destined, it is on the plan. It has to be done. Just have to take it slow.
I had to take my first walking break at about 1.5miles. I am not ashamed of this, rising humidity is pushing outside temperatures into the mid to high 40s, walking breaks are vital if I am going to see my hotel ever again.
I make it to the turnaround point in one piece, in fact a very slight breeze has wafted in and has taken the edge off. It gives me something to flick my sweat into, sadly it is not enough of a breeze to let the salty wet stuff evaporate so my efforts to flick it away is more a mission to stop me from drowning then cool me down.
On my journey back, I begin to wonder if I have taken this too far. My watch is on my left arm, I can see it on my left arm, but I can feel it on the right and it is really distracting. As I squeeze out another bucket full of sweat from my headband, I realise that it is nicer with it off than on, so I wear it like a watch, which helps deal with the distraction. Am I dangerously on the verge of heat-exhaustion?
Some miles later
Taking another short walking break, and sucking down some of my electrolyte enriched fluid, I observe that the humidity has reached a new high, humidity hangs in the air like rain, rain that is paused, rain that will never come. A giant, country sized sauna spreads out all around me and my fingers are pruning up. My trainers are beginning to squelch too. I’ve been drier in swimming pools!!
There is a water tap here, the water is cold. I douse my head and the sweat band in cold water in an attempt to cool down, the effect is more psychological than physical, i would need to bathe in this for it to have any real impact. I consider jumping in the sea, but I know that the warm, salty slush will just make me chafe. And your clothes? What are you naked? No maam, but my clothes are so sweat drenched that they and I have switched roles, as I run along, the sweat is wicked off my clothes and back onto my body. I would will myself to reabsorb if it would help, but it won’t.
On the path ahead are some other people, running a short loop with large bits of wood over their shoulders. A muscular, loud man shouts at them on the grass. He sounds angry – oh wait, these are the military fitness guys. Fuck dude. I think about running past but fear I will be press-ganged into a session so take the long way around.
7 miles in 70% humidity in 90 mins. At least I know that it is possible to run in 70% humidity and still in a reasonable time. But I think if the humidity is 80 or above or the ‘feels like’ temp is over 50, then I will be treadmill bound.