The closest thing to accurate about that gif is the head wiping. This weekend was BRUTAL in Charm City. 90+ degrees with heat indexes over 100. I knew it would be and yet I still decided I was going to go for my first longer outside run in awhile on Saturday morning.
The plan was to go 9 miles; I had it mapped out and everything. Let me just tell you that it took all of about 2 miles for me to realize that there would be no 9 miles. Even at 8am the humidity was out of control and sweat was literally dripping off my clothes.
So 8 miles. I could do 8 miles. I knew exactly where on the route I could cut corners to knock off that extra mile.
I got to 4 when it then it became a matter of getting to the closest convenience store because I was already SO DEHYDRATED. It was there that I shut down my watch, got some water from a kind lady who look petrified that I might just drop dead right there at the counter, and took a nice long break. I only made it 5 miles into my run and it was the smart thing to do. As soon as the gloriously cold water went down my throat it popped right back out on my skin. It was the coldest sweat I ever remember having in my life.
After about 10 minutes of milling around the parking lot of the store and probably looking extra creepy, I decided to be on my way. I was still a little more than 3 miles from my house if I finished out the route that I had planned and I managed to make it all the way back fairly easily thanks to the water break. That run though?
Overall not cool.
So I know this has been a topic that has been done to death already, but just a few things to remember about running in the heat. Especially now that many of us are into the most terrible heat of the summer, ie: that which drove me inside to the treadmill yesterday because I was not about to have a repeat of Saturday:
1) Give yourself time to get acclimated.
Which is something I did not do. I am a self-proclaimed treadmill lover and have been spending a lot of time running in the nice, temperature controlled gym this summer. I should have worked up to that 8 mile a lot more steadily than I did.
2) Hydrate, YOU FOOL!
And by “you fool” I mean me, although it is important for all of us to remember that in the hottest of the hot days of the summer we should be upping our water consumption. Even if we think we might not need water on our run…we might need water on our run. And again by “we” I mean “me”. I should never have left that water bottle sitting on the counter.
3) Take it Easy.
Here’s a handy chart. I loved this chart for winter and was pleased to see that they have one for summer too. Let’s just say that according to my watch I was not paying one bit of attention to any of this on Saturday morning.
It’s like I had somewhere to be or something, which in reality I did not. I probably would have been able to complete 9 miles—or even not split up my 8—had I dialed back my pace.
And of course I don’t think any of us really need this particular reminder, but wear as little clothing as you can comfortably (or legally) go out in public in.
All this stuff is basic knowledge, but just like with pretty much everything else in my life I need to learn to take my own good advice. I’m hoping that by writing these out it will help keep me accountable for next time. 🙂
How are you dealing with running in the summer heat? Any additional tips to share?
I hope everyone had a great weekend and STAY COOL out there! It’s going to be another hot one today!