While the western parts of the world are wrapping up for winter, us easterners are throwing on our sunscreen for the heat of summer. My training for my first half marathon took place during the cooler months in Australia. But as the summer heats up, I have been looking into training methods that help in the heat. For those living in areas with drastic season changes, you must remember to switch up your techniques as the weather shifts. Check out some of these tips for preparing for a race when the summer hits.
If you have the flexibility to run in the early mornings or evenings, choose that over a midday run. The cooler temps will allow your body to use its fullest potential for endurance. When we run in the heat, our core is overheated and therefore it send the blood away from our muscles to the surface of our skin. If we can find the coolest time of day and take our run at that time, our training methods are able to remain similar year round.
Take the Heat
For those who are unable to make early morning or evenings work for their run, some science points to benefits coming from training in the heat. Working out in hot temperatures can help our bodies naturally adapt to the climate. Your body learns how to sweat more, increase your blood-plasma level, and lover your core body temperature. These adaptations can help you become more physically fit and be prepared to train in various circumstances. Using caution is always key when running in the heat. Making sure to limit your training during temperatures over 90 degrees fahrenheit is recommended by experts.
During summer, plenty of pools and water activities become available to partake the public. Adapting your workout to incorporate water is a great way to cool off and still stay fit. Taking a jog to your local pool (as long as it is within a reasonable distance) and jumping in for a few laps is a solid exercise plan for those scorching days. Finding a local waterpark is also a great way to stay fit. Walk around the whole park a few times to keep your heart rate going but cool off as you go under a sprinkler or fountain.