And if you are like me, you are training for a fall race. Two in fact for me. The Kaua'i Marathon on September 6th and the Honolulu Marathon on December 13th. That means one thing, I need to make my summer long runs happen and not use temperatures as an excuse and with the Maui Marathon reaching record highs in temperatures last September, I need to be tough. Tough but not stupid. Overheating and dehydration are not good training elements and really should be avoided at all costs. Don't you agree?
So here are my top 5 summer running tips:
- Hydrate: Summertime is not the time to skimp on your hydration and I am completely for carrying your own hydration whether it be plain water or a sports drink. However, I would urge you to consider a sports drink for longer runs, especially in the summer, to ensure your electrolytes stay in balance. I like running hands free and my CamelBak Marathoner vest continues to be a blessing in my life. My vest is nearly two years old and is still holding up beautifully and if that doesn't attest to quality, what does? And hydration isn't just on the run but before and after. Be sure to keep your body hydrated for so many reasons. You can read more about hydration and dehydration HERE.
- Run in the cooler hours: This seems pretty straight forward doesn't it? You may just want to head out earlier in the day or later in the evening to log your long runs when the temperatures are cooler. I get wanting to train in the heat to get used to the heat. Truly, I do. I look forward to my Texas runs as heat training runs but if I know I am going for miles and miles, I will head out earlier. It is just the smart thing to do.
- Protect your skin: Summertime isn't just warmer temperatures but sunshine. Lather on sunscreen and for me, extra BodyGlide, to ensure your skin is protected from sunburns and chafing. You can even find me putting on my sunscreen before my running clothes to ensure I do not miss little patches of skin near the edges of my garments. I also try to convince myself that all that extra sunscreen provides a bit a chafing protection too. What do you think?
- Protect your eyes: Many people can forgot that their eyes need to be protected from the harsh sunlight, which can bounce back up into your eyes from the asphalt etc. I have very sensitive eyes so it is hard to forgot about them but I have also found some sunglasses bug me on the run as they slip and slide; however, Meb suggests in his book that this is because I am looking down a wee bit too much on my run. He may be on to something. Who am I to question Meb? I have also invested in a good wicking running hat that helps shield my eyes from the sunshine and it has the added benefit of keeping wispy hairs out of my eyes.
- Listen to your body: I can't stress this enough....LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! This is not only true during our hot summer runs but every single run we do. I wouldn't be where I am in my running streak without listening to my body and sometimes that means running less or slower. In the summer heat, running slower may be just what you and I need to do in order to hit our running distance goals. That is okay. Be kind to your body and it will repay you by performing well for many days to come.
What are your summer running tips?
Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for my Texas running.
Daily Bible Verse: And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years." ~ Genesis 1:14