Feeling light-headed and headachy - but proud, too.

So, I completed W6R3 this morning and am amazed that I managed to run for 25 minutes. I would never have thought I could do that just a few weeks ago. So proud of myself. BUT, I felt very light-headed when I'd finished and I developed a headache a couple of hours later. (A couple of paracetamol got rid of it.) Now, I assume this is because of dehydration. I did drink a lot after my run, but I wanted to ask the more experienced runners if there is anything else I should be doing to minimize light-headedness? I'm really enjoying the runs and I don't want to be stalled by headaches and wooziness.


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14 Replies

  • I find that I need to take plenty of fluids on board the day before I run.

  • Hi Simon, I have just done week7 run 1, I always make sure I have some water before running, not too soon or too much or you will get a stitch. Then when I get back lots of water and something to eat.

  • Oh forgot to say well done on completing week six!

  • Thanks Vixchile. That's exactly what I've been doing. Maybe it's just a case of me getting used to running longer distances. I haven't had a stitch yet so must be doing OK!

  • Just hope it's nothing too serious. Take care if yourself, maybe someone who has been running longer might be able to help. If it persists go and see the gp.

  • Hi well done! Could it be hay fever? I don't get the runny nose and cold like symptoms of some hay fever sufferers, I get itchy eyes and when it is a very high pollen count a head ache and light headed feeling. Antihistamines take care of it so I don't suffer at all. I run early morning so I take one the night before.

  • I have hay fever already. This is a temporary thing. It went after about half an hour (the light-headedness). I take antihistamines so not too bad this year. (I'm worst in April and early May.) Sounds like it's just dehydration.

  • Why not try a sports hydration drink before you go out. Your symptoms sound very much like dehydration to me. Then make sure you take more fluids when you get back after your run. If you're really worried you could check with your GP.

  • You don't need to limit yourself to drinking either before or after running. A couple of quid will buy you one of those handy bottles built around a hand-grip, so you can also hydrate during the run.

    (here's a link to a well known mail order company which is also known for treating its workers like rubbish: amazon.co.uk/s/?ie=UTF8&key...)

    I have started to use one a few weeks ago, and have found that I very quickly forget that I've got something in my hands - except when I feel like a sip!

  • It has been very hot and sticky these last few days - enough to make you feel woozy without the running! Coconut water after running is very good - supposed to be full of electrolytes ( whatever they are....)

  • Thanks all. I'm not worried - it's the first time it's happened and it wasn't bad. I do take a bottle of water with me but don't think to drink while running. Now I don't stop for walking breaks I'm going to have to learn to drink on the run!

  • My son the Ironman asked me what I drank to hydrate during and after running and nearly had a fit when I said just water. I had begun to develop symptoms just like yours and was starting to get muscle cramps and occasionally my thumb and fingers would go into a claw like spasm. Turns out it was all due to potassium deficiency. You need electrolytes to replace sweat lost, not just water. I have invested in some tablets called Tablytes (you can but them via Amazon) and now just pop one in every bottle of water I take with me when I run. It takes a while to dissolve and isn't the way the manufacturers suggest to take it but it works for me. No more cramps. Apparently very few sports energy drinks contain potassium (it's quite expensive). Coconut milk does though as Ullyrunner suggests and so do bananas.

  • I drink a glass of milk after a run, and then water, but sipped slowly. The sodium in the milk helps to replace salt lost during the run. I find this helps. Plenty of water before the run too, but not immediately.

  • Can't offer any advice re headaches & dehydration, but well done for completing that W6r3... 25 minutes is nearly 30 minutes and so you are approaching graduation. Make sure you get a good rest before W7.

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