IT IS HOT OUT THERE. Did I put that in all caps? YES I DID. Today around 2 p.m. in Kansas City it was 104 degrees according to my car thermostat. Granted, I usually find that the car thermometer runs a little high… but 104 degrees? Are you kidding me? It is still June folks!
I ran yesterday morning at 8:30 am and it was very hot and an almost unbearably humid 90 degrees. Last night, after the sun set, still the low 90s. This morning at 6 a.m. I checked the weather to try to beat the heat… it was already 85 degrees out there. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!
And not to raise your temperature any more, but I have heard that this summer is hotter sooner than it has been in the last 15 years in the Midwest… so… yay for us.
Fellow athletes, what is a running mama to do? If there is no cooler time of day, and I despise the treadmill, what options do I have to keep cooler and stay on track as I train? `
I do have a few suggestions from my years of summer training that seem to help:
Wear light, loose clothing. That means no track tights and t-shirts folks. Sports bras, tank tops, and short, nonclinging shorts. Men this means you too (although I’d suggest most men skip the sports bra, but that’s your call). Less clothing means more SPF needed though, so don’t forget the sunscreen.
Stay hydrated while running. Carry water with you or plan your routes along trails that have water fountains. Some churches put out bottles of water in coolers for runners in the summer (local running groups can probably point you in the right direction). Plan to drink some water every mile mark, that way you have a pattern and you don’t forget. Drinking plenty of water before and while you run can also prevent those unwanted runners bathroom/GI issues, FYI.
Stay cool while running by stopping by convenient stores, grocery stores or places like Target to walk around and take breather in some AC. Shopping malls are a good place too (but watch out for super tedious security gaurds on the prowl for rule-breaking-runners- wink, wink). Put a couple bucks in your pocket in case you need to prove you are a paying customer. Not joking- I totally do this when I need to plan convenient store restroom breaks for long runs when I train!
Plan routes that have shade if possible. Trails are cooler than hot pavement like sidewalks or roads. Running along bodies of water can feel cooler, and so can running on windy days.
These are the tips that I have learned in my time training during the hot months. Do you have any tricks of the trade that keep you cooler in the summer? I would love to hear them- I really would! Please share! Comment below.
Keep me updated on your training progress too, and happy running!