Updated: Oct 21, 2021
5 easy tips to keep your body cool while running during the summer
Tips for Running in the Summer Heat
Running is more than just exercise for many people - it’s a way to relieve stress and be social. However, running when the temperature rises presents new challenges that must be addressed. If you go out unprepared you may have a bad run, or worse, seriously injure yourself. Here are five tips for running in the heat.
You will sweat more when you run in the heat and it is vital that you stay hydrated. Be sure to carry water or sports drink with you and plan your route along water stops if possible. You can use gas stations, public water fountains, or drop off a cooler of water on your route before you run. Consider freezing your water bottles so your drink will stay colder for longer. Besides staying hydrated on your run, be sure to drink more water all the time, especially right before and after your run.
2. Stay Consistent
The best way to run in the heat is to do it often. This will help your body acclimate. It may not be the most fun solution, but it works! You can make things a little easier on yourself by always trying to run in the shade and heading out early in the morning or later in the evening. If you do prefer to run in the middle of the day when the sun is highest, pay close attention to how you feel and pace yourself. This leads us to our next point.
4. Slow Down
Summer is not the time to try and break records. You may be training for a PR race, but these runs are not it! Give yourself a break and slow down. This will help your body conserve energy, lower your heart rate, and keep you cooler. And remember that running slower in the heat doesn’t mean you won’t be able to pick up the pace again once temperatures begin to cool.
5. Dress for Success
Wear light colored clothes and don’t wear long sleeves or pants unless you have to. A hat or visor is a good idea for protecting your face, but some hats are not breathable and can make you feel hotter. If that’s the case, considering using a wet, cold towel on your neck and head. Wear sports sunscreen on your face and arms and keep those sunglasses handy!
Running in the heat can be difficult but you can conquer it if you use the tips above. Remember to always use caution when you run in high temperatures. If you start to feel dizzy, nauseous, or confused, then immediately stop running. Get in the shade, rest, and hydrate. Don’t get so sick that you can’t run again tomorrow!