In an earlier post about racing in hot weather, I listed out some tips for dealing with the heat. I’ve been asked the question a lot recently, so I thought I would pull out the tips and list them out seperately.
Here are my suggestions if you’re racing in hot weather.
– Remember to drink plenty of fluid and keep yourself wet by pouring water over your head and skin.
– It may seem counter-intuitive, but you’ll stay cooler if you cover parts of your body to keep the sun off of you. If it’s really, really hot, you may want to wear one of those mesh caps that has a tail on it to cover the back of your neck.
– Wear extremely light-weight clothing that can be soaked with water in aid stations to keep you cool and not cause chaffing. This would include most triathlon gear that is made to be worn wet.
– Cover your head with a light colored vented hat and fill the hat with ice at aid stations if available.
– Wear arm coolers if you’re biking in a hot weather race like an Ironman.
– Carry a water-bottle with you so that you have access to fluid whenever you need it, even between aid stations.
– Carry non-energy electrolyte tablets such as Nuun to put in plain-water to replenish electrolytes even when your stomach can not tolerate any more sweet energy drinks like Gatorade that might be served on the course. (It is critical to keep replenishing electrolytes to stave off dehydration in hot weather and plain water will not help hydrate you if you’ve become feeling sick and can’t tolerate an energy drink.)
– And finally, slow down. Racing in the heat is much tougher than racing in cooler weather. Check out the earlier post for more about this by clicking here.
Stay cool out there.
Coach Joe English, Portland Oregon, USA
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