Heating Up

DSC_0350A few tips and reminders regarding running in the heat:

It take a few weeks for your body to acclimate to heat/humidity, so be patient and sweat it out.

Be prepared for your effort to produce a slower time than it would have in cooler weather. Don’t obsess over the number on your Garmin.

Gage your workouts on effort, instead of the numbers for a few weeks. You know what your 5K effort or Half Marathon effort feels like. Get your eyes off the watch.

Hydrate well before your run. Like I have mentioned before, you need to hydrate days/hours before a long or tough effort. Running in the heat is tough, especially for long runs or speed work. Drink often before your run.

Take hydration breaks during your run, but only small sips. Gulping water will leave you with a sloshing, unhappy tummy. If you go into the run hydrated, a few sips can keep you satisfied until your post-run refueling.

Refueling with gatorade or a beverage option with electrolytes will help you recover quickly. Bananas can also help ward off muscle cramps, thanks to potassium.

Wear light colored clothes, and be prepared to potentially chafe more as you sweat more.

Sun glasses and a visor can help protect your eyes and face from sunburn, harmful rays, and swarms of bugs.

Plan your runs around the weather, when possible. Summer storms often pop up quickly, and the heat index can be a helpful tool when trying to avoid sweltering temperatures. If you can get out there in the morning or evening, your body will thank you.

Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. These can spring up quickly, and when least expected. Look out for other runners, as you may end up helping someone who becomes sick.

Embrace the heat and sweat. There’s no avoiding it, so learn to love it.

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