Everyone says “I know my body” well the only one that really knows your body is well your body. Ever have a headache? Sure we all have and its happening because your body needs something. It could be you are needing food, you are dehydrated or maybe you just need to rest. Many people including myself have taken something for the pain and just continued on. Have you ever thought about what is causing the pain? Did you miss lunch that day? Are you drinking enough fluids? Is it really dry out causing you to need to drink more ? Did you get enough sleep? Have you had your caffeine for the day? Do you need a sugar pick me up? There are lots of reasons you might be receiving these messages from your body.
Just like your head the rest of your body will talk to you as well. As hikers we need to make sure that we listen to all of these signs. We especially need to make sure that we pay attention to our feet. If we do not take care of our feet then we are no different than a NASCAR driver with only a set of all weather generic brand tires on the car. At those speeds and those distances its not a matter of if they will burn out but when. We also need to make sure we put fuel in the car and that all of the fluids are flushed often.
There are other visible messages that your body provides to you that you may not have noticed before. The easiest way to watch your hydration level is to know the term “Clear and Copious” about your urine. If its clear, lots of it and your have to go often than you are doing good. Or if you are not having to go that often but when you do its clear then all is well. If you notice that is a dark yellow/ gold and not much at all then you are indeed in need of hydration.
Each person is different in the messages both physical and visible. One of the ways i can gauge how well I am hydrated is to watch a scar on my arm. If i am really in need of a drink it is purple but if I have had lots to drink and I am well hydrated It will be pink. I am by no means a doctor or nurse however after you begin to watch for the messages you begin to notice them more. So watch for your body sending you messages and next time you get one take the time to find out why its being sent. Knowing the messages your body sends you will allow you to help provide your body with what it needs to keep you going.