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Running In The Heat - How To Stay Cool
Running In The Heat - How To Stay Cool  - blog post image

The recent hot weather streak in the UK, as glorious as it is, may make your training just that little bit harder - because lets be honest, we aren't used to it! Not only does the heat and humidity increase fatigue during your workout, but it can also increase your recovery time and reduce energy levels on days following a run. This is because your body needs to spend more energy on cooling itself, rather than delivering nutrients to your muscles to repair damage done by the workout.

We've got your back though. If you're planning on running outdoors this week, have a look at our tips to keep you cool:

  • Pre- cooling: Research has shown that athletes perform BETTER in hot environments if they cool their bodies BEFORE running! This can be done by a cool bath/shower, air conditioning, or even just a bottle of water over your head. The evaporation of this water removes heat energy, providing further benefits for a short period of time.
 
  • Hydration: If you're planning on running later , remember to drink lots of water throughout the day. Excess fluid intake straight before exercise will not be absorbed quickly enough and will be excreted in the urine.        
 
  • Clothing: wear lightweight, technical clothing that will wick sweat away from the body and allow the body's natural cooling mechanism to work. Cotton t-shirts are a no go - they trap sweat and heat close to the body. As well, wearing black clothing in the sun, will ( obviously) make you hotter - so aim for the light and bright colours instead!
  • Time your workouts: You don't need us to tell you that mornings and evenings are cooler than during the day. During times of higher temperatures, the heat produced by your muscles cannot dissipate as well. Research has shown that the brain protects the body during exertion in the heat by limiting muscle activity to prevent the core body temperature from rising to dangerous levels.
  • Adjusting: Did you know it takes 10 days for your body to fully adapt its sweating capacity and electrolyte concentration when training in hotter climates? If we are lucky enough to experience this heat for more than a few days, you'll likely find you start to feel better running in it after a few weeks. Fingers crossed!
  • Electrolyte Levels: These are mineral ions that help the body to regulate fluids. In hot weather, you lose electrolytes in your sweat so becareful to stock up before and after exercise. Sports drinks, hydration tablets, and believe it or not milk, are good ways to stay hydrated.
 
  • Listen to your body: Be observant of signs of dehydration and heat illness such as fatigue, dizziness, nausea, disorientation, and headaches. Try not to get to the point of looking like this...  
     
 
 
 
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