Monday, July 12, 2010
Joggin' in the Killer Heat, Just ain't Neat
Death by dehydration is not in the least bit funny.
Wondering how to spend the extra weekend day yesterday, and having just bought a nifty sports t-shirt, fueled by the fever that is the world cup, I decided to go for my customary jog (the route is outlined in a previous post).
I donned my red-bandana, put on my sun-screen and pumps, tuned the ol’ ipod to my favorite music (playlist entitled “Jogathon”) and decided to head out.
FYI it was 1pm, 44*C, humidity at 40%.
A killer combination.
The first 2km went smoothly, I was actually on time. However, I started to feel nauseous, so I slowed down to a trot, then a walk, in the meager shade provided by the desolate trees.
I felt drained. It was difficult to breath, literally! The humidity hung in the air like a dark specter stealing away the oxygen from what mouthfuls of air I could swallow. It felt like running underwater.
The heat alone can be dealt with, but humidity makes breathing that much more tedious. I could feel every cell in my body begin to anaerobically respire (which leads to muscles forming acid that causes muscle pains, thank you biology!)
Whenever I am on my “trek” a tiny voice inside my head (my sanity) always beckons me to cut short, why torture yourself? Just stop, walk home. I always ignore this under the pretense of male bravado. I feel that it’s a personal challenge to keep on trucking. For the first time, I conceded that I was in over my head.
I stopped on a road that would take me directly to my house; however, the distance seemed eternal. I grudgingly placed one foot before the other in an act completely fueled on auto-pilot, a persistent thought that I did not wish to pass out on the streets. I came to a realization that there is no shade whatsoever in Kuwait at 1pm! Not to mention the fact that it was a holiday, hence no shops were open; therefore the respite I would receive when a customer vacates a shop as a result of the cool winds flowing out was non-existent.
My hands were numb and clammy; I was measuring the distance between one water cooler and the other. Let this be said about the streets of Kuwait, they are properly hydrated. Albeit some not having the really frozen cold water, I would douse myself at each one, hoping that the evaporation from my head of hair would cause a brief release from the harsh rays of the unrelenting sun.
I mouthed a silent prayer of gratitude for the anonymous lady who had erected a water cooler that had freezing cold water! A real miracle after passing by 3 that had luke-warm, hot, no water.
After quenching my thirst I thought I was ready to restart my jog. Big mistake. After sprinting for merely 4 blocks I was beyond exhausted. The old leg-of-lead syndrome kicked in, and I sat down in the shade for a breather.
After closing the gap and being able to view my house in the distance, and crossing before a mall in the area, I thought it pertinent to once again try to run the remaining distance, another silly proof of bravado. Not only that, the mall had baby trees booming outside, I ran and jumped over a couple of them. Needless to say, I didn’t make it home jogging, as the jumping process took a lot out of me.
Never run in the sun, its just not that much fun!
at 11:10 am