Tips To Be In Top Shape When Running In The Heat

Tips To Be In Top Shape When Running In The Heat

For some, running can drive them to be more and do more. If you love running, exploring even unknown trails, you need to maximize your efforts while staying fit all the time. Bringing the best water bottle for running is one of the things that you should not forget. This can help you properly hydrated (that is if you get to sip smartly at regular intervals) and fuels your body.

You can get the most benefits with your efforts even when you are running during warmer days if you keep in mind these tips. Remember that heat is one of the most challenging factors that runners have to face when training or competing. Heat and humidity can affect your training and racing results both in the short and long-term.

Running in the heat affects performance

When running in the heat, your performance output will be hampered first as your body temperature will easily increase as you sweat in the soaring temperature. As a result, you feel exhausted, and perhaps, even a bit ill.

As soon as your body temperature rise, your blood is pushed to the skin and you sweat to allow your body temperature to cool down. In the process body fluids are released as you sweat, breathe, and as they evaporate from your body. As body fluids leave the body, the blood level in the body also goes down. This is due to the fact that even the blood has a high water content (92% water). If there is less blood available to transport oxygen to the working muscles and to the brain, the body will be forced to double its efforts to release an equivalent energy just as when it has an acceptable level of blood. With less oxygen, you won’t be able to run as fast or as much.

Training in the heat can also easily lead to dehydration. This happens as your body’s cooling system (your ability to sweat) weakens, the fluid levels in your body also drop. As a result, controlling the body temperature will also be quite difficult. This leads to the core body temperature to rise quickly. In the end, the body system goes through the vicious cycle that results in the process and severely limits performance.

Running in the heat affects recovery

Heat and humidity do not only affect a runner’s performance by making a workout seem to be more difficult, but it can also hinder immediate muscle recovery. As a result, it will affect your ability to perform consecutive workouts.

After working out or training in a hot and humid environment, your body will spend time and energy to cool off itself first instead of delivering the much-needed nutrients to your battered muscles. That means it will take more time before your body will be able to repair any damage caused by the activity since there the nutrients that will aid the healing process are still waiting for the body to deliver them.

Tips To Remain In Top Shape When Running In The Heat

Get your fill at regular intervals

Even at the beginning of this post, we already emphasized the significance of proper hydration. Hydration is a critical element that can keep your body cool down faster when necessary. As water is an essential element of life, even if no one reminds you to drink, you will do so as soon as you feel thirsty. The problem, however, not getting safely hydrated will only cause dehydration, heat illnesses, or an overall health condition.

Experts, particularly those at the American College of Sports and Medicine, remind us that pre-hydration is as important as post hydration and re-hydration throughout an intense workout or training. They particularly recommend to consuming enough fluid to keep a healthy balance between fluid lost and the replacement fluid. Two hours before engaging in an intense activity, drink 400–600 mL (14–22 oz) of fluid.

Hydration should not stop after that, however. You will still need to drink 150–350 mL (6–12 oz) of fluid every 15–20 min (depending on tolerance). Once you are done with your training or workout, you will still need to consume adequate fluids to replace sweat losses during the activity. You will need to drink at least 16–24 oz (450–675 mL) of fluid for every pound (0.5 kg) of body weight that you lose during the entire activity.

Adjust your workout time and pace

As you may have already observed, your performance suffers in the heat and humidity. Even professional runners have suffered as a consequence of running in such undesirable temperatures. As such, it is crucial that you adjust your workout times and race paces to ensure that your body will be able to meet the demands of your immediate environment as you run.

Keep watch of what you drink

When you engage in high-intense workouts like running, you lose not only body fluids but also use up a lot of your energy in the form of electrolytes.  This only means that the water that you drink may not be enough to keep you properly hydrated. You also need drinks and foods that will help replace the electrolytes that you lose as you workout or train. Sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and chloride should be replaced as you replace the fluids that you released as you sweat. The ACSM also approves and recommends of drinking sports drink  for prolonged physical activity in hot weather.

Bring your own water bottle

You can plan your training route where water sources may be available or you can set up your car to a bend where you can stop and get your fill after one round or so. But if you have one of the best water bottles for running, you won’t have to worry where your thirst or the beep to take the next sip is heard. You can just sip as you go. With so many options to choose from, you’ll definitely find one with the most benefits so take your time when you still need to decide which water bottle to go with.

Conclusion

As you can see, the majority of your concern to be in top shape when running in the heat is to stay safely hydrated before, during, even after your training or workout. If you can do these simple recommendations, you can be certain that you will always benefit from your runs even if you do it in the heat.