Wednesday, 14 March 2012

On Being an Amateur Runner Who Itches


This morning I went for a run. This isn't the first time I have stepped out of my house bare-faced with my hair pulled back, in a pair of span-sexy Nike leggings, a bright purple jumper and fluorescent pink pair of Lunarglide runners. I have ran many times before and it never gets better. I give as much as I can to this horrible "getting fit" regime, and yet my body just won't work with it! I say body, what I really mean is my skin. I experience the most horrendous bouts of itchy skin whenever I run. Does anyone else; pro, amateur, or social, experience this when you run?

I have googled this issue, and tried almost everything - cream your skin before exercising, thoroughly warm up beforehand - and yet nothing. Before today's run I moisturised the areas most prone to itching: legs, thighs and hips, did my 10 mins worth of BLT (bum, legs and tums NOT bacon, lettuce and tomato HAHAHA) work-out, wore TWO pairs of running leggings and thought I was set. It was a pleasant morning so surely my itchiness wouldn't occur as it only usually happens in the cold. BOY, I was wrong. Five minutes into it and my legs were finished. I actually wanted to rip my leggings off and scratch my legs until it bled. It is so fucking difficult trying to resist the urge to scratch and so, so painful. The many times it has happened before, I would scratch my legs so bad that they would turn red and have speckles of blood under my skin. I experience itchy skin not only when I run, but also when I walk at a fast pace outdoors. It is the worst during winter, to the point of not even being able to enjoy shopping trips! I think it has something to do with my body's inability to regulate my body temperature, which is probably why I sweat so much as soon as I start doing anything at a faster pace (you should see me when I am at spinning, actual LOLZ). SIGHS. 

I have also read that itchiness may be caused by an allergic reaction. RACHEL IS ACTUALLY ALLERGIC TO RUNNING!!! Could this be true? I've been to the doctors about this issue (the same GP who also once Googled symptoms whilst I was in her room) and, of course, she was baffled and had no idea what I was on about. According to a Steady Health forum"itching is caused by mast cell degeneration which leads to histamine release in the areas of the body that feel the most impact as you walk or run. These are mostly the thighs, legs, love handles" and it is called exercising-induced urticaria. Yeahh, so I self-diagnosed. The user suggests taking antihistamine 30mins prior to exercising which is what I am going to try next. 


Fingers crossed this works for me please! I don't want to be able to only exercise indoors, how bloody boring. I think I would actually quite enjoy running if it wasn't so agonising, if it didn't feel like my legs were getting stung by thousands of bees and if I didn't have the urge to constantly scratch my skin off.

I run aimlessly, without a goal.

I like the sounds of the cars passing, and the bashing of the wind in my ears which is why I run without music. PLUS my iPhone earphones are shit to run with, and I refuse to pay for new ones! I enjoy running because it is pretty peaceful running alone: it allows you to channel your thoughts, run and discover new routes and see new things in your local area you would not have otherwise discovered.

Those moments I stop to calm down the itchiness are also the moments when I take in my surroundings...whip out my iPhone and obviously Instagram it all. DURR.

The two photos above are Instagram photos from today's run, below are a few more plus some from previous runs! If you have Instagram, follow me! I am an absolute addict, find me at: @Supernoodlerach!


I have a Twitter. Follow me. 

I have a Tumblr. Follow me.

I have an amazing Instagram Account. Follow me. 

I have Pinterest. Follow me.

I have a Facebook. Leave that the fuck alone.

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