The Marathon training clinic starts during the summer—and it is hot.
However, you can beat the heat and still enjoy your workouts. Here are some simple guidelines to stay cool when you’re on your run or walk.
Run or walk in the early morning hours. Not only is the temperature cooler, but air quality is generally better.
Drink! Drink! Drink! Water, that is. The warm weather will make you perspire even more, and that is precious fluid your muscles need to keep going. Replenish the fluids while you are running, as well as before and after the run.
Acclimate. Ease into warm weather and acclimate yourself. For the first two weeks of hot weather, avoid speed training. Acclimation should be complete in 10 days to two weeks…be patient.
Wear loose, light, and comfortable clothing. Wear light colored, loose fitting clothing. Let your body breathe.
Stay away from the rays. Apply plenty of sunscreen. You are working hard to keep you body in shape, so don’t neglect your skin. Wear a hat. Keep you head covered with a light mesh fiber that breathes. Don’t wear a hat of heavy material.
Pour water on your head. It won’t lower your body’s temperature, but it will make you feel better on those hot days.
Start your training run slowly. Do the first mile a couple of minutes slower than your usual pace.
Cool off in a pool. A cool dip in the pool or a cool bath will assist your recovery following a run or walk on a hot day.
Be smart and safe…carry your own water. Run with your own water, even on those shorter homework days. Don’t assume you’ll make it home.
Learn the warning of overheating. Heat induced illness is not something to ignore. Know the warning signs and heed them if you find yourself experiencing them: headache or lack of concentration; loss of muscular control; over sweating followed by clammy skin and cessation of sweating; hot and cold flashes, upset stomach, cramps, vomiting and dizziness.
Reduce your speed. Do speed training in the morning or evening hours. The heart actually beats faster in the heat, so don’t put any more stress on your system than is necessary.
Adjust your expectations. Heat will affect your speed. You just cannot run or walk faster in the heat, so slow down. Realize the environment is a factor in training and in races.
Think before you drink. This is not an ad for designated runners, but rather a reminder that caffeine and alcohol work as diuretics, which means they increase your urine output. This leads to dehydration. Lower your consumption of both of these, and you should be able to run and walk a little more comfortably.