I know I keepsaying this, but today was definitely the hottest run yet!!!
Four miles of sweat-dripping, sun-blazing, breeze-missing heat. Brutes. On the plus side, I was temporarily distracted from my sticky situation when I almost ran into a massive deer on the trail! Literally, almost ran into it! I looked up around mile 3 and realized I was rapidly closing a 20 foot gap between myself and a big, brown-eyed one…and it wasn’t moving.
Apparently he/she/it didn’t hear me coming, and I wasn’t about to get hooved, so I started clapping like a mad woman. Mad, but effective. Off he/she/it went into the woods!
At any rate, 36 minutes later I made it home alive thanks to a couple of my fool-proof rules for surviving summertime exercise:
1. Hydrate. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids after a hot run, but, more importantly in my opinion, make sure to drink plenty before you run!I aim to drink at least 100oz of water throughout the day before a run in the summertime heat. This may be too much, or too little, for you, but for me it’s generally good.
Tip: If you don’t have a camelbak but need/want to run with water, fill a squeezable, plastic bottle that Target/Walgreens/etc sells to put your shampoo in when you travel, with water! It’s usually around 3-4 oz and perfect for a quick, hydrating sip on the run.
2. Dress properly. I can absolutely tell the difference in my performance when I run in a sleeveless tank top versus a high-neck, sleeved shirt (aka a t-shirt). You don’t need a fancy one – I wear the $6 ribbed ones from Old Navy. I stay SO much cooler when my neck and chest can breathe!
3. Remember your form. I tend to slouch and drop my head and neck when it’s super hot out, or I’m really tired during a run. This actually makes it harder to breathe, so I aim to keep my chest up and my gaze 20-30 yards ahead of me at all times.
4. Go for the gold. When it starts to get really tough, I calculate the time and/or distance I have left. Then I start repeating to myself “anybody can run for xyz minutes, or xyz miles – this is no sweat!” As I’ve often said, running is 90% mental, so giving yourself a little pep talk during a particularly hard run always helps me get through it.
5. Be smart. If you feel too exhausted to go on, or start to feel dizzy or lightheaded – STOP. There’s a time and a place to push yourself physically, but it’s generally not in the unforgiving summer sun.
With that – go! Show summer who’s boss!
After I placed myself under an ice cold shower, I showed dinner who was boss! Well…I guess Ben did!