Running in the Summer
Summer is right around the corner! The warm, sunny weather will have more and more people wanting to move their workouts outdoors. While running outside is beneficial for both your physical and mental health, it is important to understand how to stay safe in the summer heat. Listed below are safety tips for running in the heat collected from the Road Runners Club of America and Dr. Michael Kelly, a physical therapist at NovaCare Rehabilitation in Chicago and running instructor at Shred415.
Tips for Running in the Heat
- On really hot days, aim to run in the morning or evening when it is a little cooler and the sun isn’t as harsh. If you are going to run during the day, check the weather first and avoid running if the temperature is above 98.6 degrees and the humidity is above 70-80%. Your body won’t be able to regulate its temperature through your sweat evaporating, causing you to easily overheat.
- If the weather conditions permit running outside, remember to stay hydrated! It is recommended to pre-hydrate before any run. Drink 10–15 oz. of water 15 minutes prior to running, and drink fluids every 20–30 minutes along your longer routes.
- Be careful not to over-hydrate. Drinking too much water before and during your run could cause hyponatremia, a lack of salt in the body. In an interview with Fitness Magazine, Dr. Kelly suggests weighing yourself before and after your run. You should loose two to five percent of your body weight in water. If you gained water weight, it is likely you over-hydrated.
- The process of sweating and having it evaporate off your skin is how your body keeps cool. So remember to not wipe the sweat off your face as you run!
- Avoid direct sunlight whenever possible. Run in the shade, wear protective sunglasses, and wear a visor that shades your face but still allows heat to release form the top of your head. Whether you are going to be in the shade or not, always apply sunscreen with 15 SPF or higher.
- Don’t wear too much clothing. Wearing a long-sleeve shirt or long pants will protect you from UV rays, but it will cause you to overheat quickly. Instead, wear light, breathable clothing and sunscreen!
Running is a great choice for exercise and following these tips will ensure you stay safe during the summer months! For more information, click here!