With the mornings getting lighter and the cold evenings fading, it’s a welcomed sight to feel the sun on your face once again. For runners, this can be a blessing and a curse. On one hand, there are no more icy mornings and slippery ground. On the other, running in the heat can be uncomfortable and exhaust you much quicker.
Running for fitness or fun is pretty popular, with more than 50 million Americans participating in the activity regularly. However, once that warm weather increases, it can be a testing experience. Though it’s still possible to enjoy a summer run, there are many aspects to consider beforehand.
To find out how to best prepare to run in hot weather, keep reading to find out the top 5 tips for runners.
Avoid the Height of the Day
Choosing the right time of day is key in mastering running in the heat. Running in high humidity can be deadly, as this prevents your body’s ability to evaporate perspiration. Meaning your skin isn’t able to breathe, and you’ll rapidly overheat.
Venture out in the early morning or as the sun goes down. You’ll find it cooler and easier conditions to exercise in.
The most important of all these running tips is to properly hydrate yourself. Be sure to drink enough before your run, and carry a bottle of water with you. You’ll need to replace the water you lose through sweat.
Be sure to listen to your body at all times, it’ll tell you when it’s had enough. Your heart rate naturally increases in hot weather, therefore your body works harder. The heat will instinctively slow you down, so work with it, not against it.
Breathable fabrics are crucial for running in the heat. No matter your size, in warm conditions, loose clothing can cause a number of issues. The most common side effect is chafing.
Instead, wear breathable running tights to protect your legs from abrasions. Why not look into other methods of protection and read about inner thigh chafing.
Plan Your Route
If you’re new to running in the heat, it’s advisable to work up to it. Roads, pavements, and urban areas give off more heat on hotter days. Try running in shaded areas like woodlands, or flat running locations, as these will benefit you more in the heat than hill climbs.
You can also run alongside bodies of water to act as a cooling aid, or across open fields on a windy day. That breeze will be a relief.
Think You Know How to Start Running in the Heat?
Now that you know the best tips for running in the heat, you’ll have a better understanding of what it takes to endure exercising on those hot summer days.
The human body tends to acclimate pretty quickly, so it won’t take long before you’re used to the heat. But the bottom line is to be smart and use your common sense. If you think it’s just too hot outside, then skip a day. Do what’s best for you.
For related articles, check out our other blog posts.