Posted by: Joe English | July 8, 2015

Six Tips for Hot Weather Running #running #runner #fitness

running-advice-bugTemperatures are up out there runners and they seem to be staying that way this summer. Running in the heat can be challenging, even dangerous. If you take the proper precautions and the right expectations, you can run smart and keep the heat from hurting you. Today, six quick tips for runners to deal with running in hot weather.

6 tips for Hot Weather Running from Running-Advice.com

6 tips for Hot Weather Running from Running-Advice.com

1. Slow down — running in hot weather is very much like running up hill. Just as running up a hill requires more effort, running in hot weather also should slow you down. And the hotter the weather, the steeper the hill. The problem is that we runners want to hit our pace goals. Comparing a hot weather run to a cool weather run is not an apples to apples comparison. Slow down as the heat goes up. Trying to run at a similar effort level that you would in cooler weather.

2. Dress in loose, light clothes — wear light-weight, breathable clothing, rather than tight form-fitting fabrics. The body cools itself when air moves across the skin and comes in contact with your sweat. Loose, flowing, fabrics aid in cooling much more than tighter fighting clothes. Tight fitting clothes are fine for the gym or running in cooler weather, but when you’re braving heat that feels like the Sahara, dress like you live there.

3. Cover your head — keeping the sun off your head both cools you and keeps the sun out of your eyes. The later relaxes your shoulders and upper body. Hats are also handy because you can dunk them in cold water or even put ice in them as you run. The cool water will drip down your neck, providing even more cooling power.

4. Increase your fluid intake — You need to be consuming as much fluid as your sweating. If you sweat a ton, then you need to drink a ton. We’ve written plenty on this topic. Here’s one of our videos where I talk about hydration with a sports scientist from Gatorade.

5. Drink your electrolytes — plain water only does half the job. You need sodium, potassium and magnessium as well. If you are a salty sweater (someone typically with a white ring on your forehead or white lines on your clothes after you dry out), that is a visible sign of the sodium that you are losing. Use a drink like Nuun that contains electrolytes, but doesn’t contain sugar that may upset your stomach. Click here to view or buy Nuun on Amazon from our Amazon store.

6. Run early — run when you are fresh, the sun is less intense and temperatures are relatively cool. Afternoon workouts in the heat are tough both physically and mentally.

Stay safe and healthy out there runners.

Coach Joe English, Portland, Oregon USA
Running-Advice.com and RUN Time


Responses

  1. Great post with some good advice. There are days when it’s hot and humid, that wearing a hat seems to trap the heat. Any advice? Thanks

    • Humidity even makes conditions worse, because it makes the body’s cooling system less effective. But wearing a hat is still a good idea. The choice of hat, however, is important. Obviously a hat that is designed to retain heat (like a ski hat or even a non-breathable baseball cap) would not be ideal. A hat designed for heat with wide mesh and plenty of venting will work well. I like the hats made for hot weather running that have “tails” on the back that cover the neck. Look for a hat with a “breathable mesh” to provide “shade” for the head, but to allow air to escape.

      As one final thought, think about hot weather cultures in places that are very hot and humid — like Vietnam, China or India. The peoples there wear broad hats or turbans. This is to keep the sun off of their heads. Also think to traditional desert peoples, like those in the Middle East, that keep almost entirely covered. The right choice of fabrics is key, but covering up does not necessarily mean that people will be hotter in doing so.

      Thanks for reading!


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