A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

3 Options for Running in the Heat

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All summer long, runners have been complaining about the heat. Hey, we are allowed to! It seems like heat can kill anyone's mojo, even though the degree in which it affects us pretty much depends on the individual person. 


We are well into August, so I suppose it is a little late to be discussing running in the heat options, but that is what I am doing today!



The way I see it, we all have 3 Options when it comes to running when it is super hot...


Option #1: Suck it up and run outside.



We suck things up all the time, and as athletes, we must suck it up once in awhile and do things we may not feel like doing because we know in the long run, we will be happy we did. Sometimes hitting the pavement in the scorching sun is what we choose. Just be sure that if this is the option you choose, you do it safely. Here is a post I wrote a couple years ago about running in the heat: Running Through The Elements: Heat Edition.


Of course, I firmly believe there are times (at least here in PA!) that it is TOO HOT to safely run outside. Don't be an idiot. Use your judgement!

Option #2 Choose not to run, but don't complain about it.



This is a valid choice, people! It is okay to skip a run because of the heat. It is okay to skip a run because you are tired or not feeling it. Sometimes you need an unexpected rest day and that's okay. If you do it, own it. And don't complain or feel guilty about it. This is okay to do sometimes.

Obviously if you have goals for yourself, it is not okay to do this all the time. Skip enough runs and you will not reach your goals. But once in awhile? Do not fret. Just use your head about it.


Option #3 Find a treadmill.



This may be easier for some runners than others. Some have treadmills in their home. Some belong to a gym where they use the treadmill during unpleasant weather conditions. However, if you don't own a treadmill and don't belong to a gym, finding a treadmill may be more difficult and costly. You could find a nearby gym and pay the daily use fee. It will probably be expensive to do that, but depending on how important it is that you complete your run that day, it is an option. Probably not something you want to do often- it would be cheaper to just join the gym than pay the daily fee a couple times a month!
How do you survive the heat in the summer? Option #1, #2, or #3?

28 comments:

  1. I am so spoiled w/ our Colorado weather (plus running pre dawn) I don't have to worry about the heat. Most mornings it is in the low 60's w/ very little humidity. We had a cooler day yesterday w/ rain so this morning it's only 51. I think if I had no choice but to run when it was hot, I would choose to swim instead!

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    1. I guess I should have listed the 4th option as "swimming"! :) You are not spoiled, you are so disciplined that you get up early!

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    2. LOL--well, I think I am probably one of your only readers that is almost as obsessed w/ my swimming as my running. I just love it and thank goodness it has always been there to "save" me (nasty weather, injuries, etc).

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  2. I alternate between all three. We have a treadmill in the basement, so that is a big safety net. I usually opt to get up early and go out before it is terrible. I figure it is good mental training, and good training if you don't know what race day conditions will be!

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    1. That is nice you have the treadmill option if you need it!

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  3. I want Susan's weather!
    This week, I am choosing not run, well actually my body has decided not to run. I have run all summer and had some rough moments, but the last week, things just exploded. Last year I retreated to the treadmill, but I can't do that now, so I guess I will just run less and hope I can get my mojo back.

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    1. Me too! Colorado is awesome for soooooo many reasons!

      I am sorry the summer weather is not treating you well. Do you ever swim?

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    2. No, no pool at my gym. When I went to a pool while I was injured I had to pay to be in a medical program. I miss it :(

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  4. I usually choose option #1, but to be fair, our summers are typically pretty mild here on Lake Michigan. Humidity is more of a problem than heat, I'd say. I think the hottest it's gotten this summer, that I can remember, is like 90.

    I will add that if you choose option #1, don't be afraid to stop whenever you need to to drink water or just catch your breath in the shade. My long-ish runs in the summer heat always take way longer than normal because I often pause to collect myself. Safety is more important!

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    1. Very good tip, thank you for sharing that! One hot day this summer I decided to run in a business park. What the hell was a thinking? No trees, all asphalt. When I am PLANNING I sometimes actually even come inside my house for water mid run to cool down in the a/c!

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  5. I run outside. But you know what's crazy? My treadmill is in our garage which is like a zillion degrees hotter than outside which I kind of love because it makes me feel so badass. But also it's good training (I heard running in the heat is like running at elevation). I'm close to the loo and to an endless supply of cold water, so it works.

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    1. That is so funny that your treadmill option is actually the warmer option of the too!

      I understand the badass feeling. Sometimes I do circuits outside in the scorching heat and I feel great!

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  6. It's definitely nice for those of us who have the option of getting up early and running before the heat gets to be too hot! That's really how I got through my training last summer when I was running loads of miles towards the end. This summer I haven't been running nearly as much so it hasn't bothered me. Although I did only a 3 miler last week and about collapsed from heat stroke afterwards. It was 6pm so I though it was cool enough to run. I looked at my phone afterwards and it still said 88 degrees! I won't complain though because I do not look forward to running in ice and snow!

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    1. Isn't PA weather NUTS? We really do experience very extreme temperatures!

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  7. I definitely retreat to my treadmill when it's too hot. Or too dark. Or too cold. Or I'm just too lazy to go outside. Or I have a lot of shows on my DVR... well, you get the idea. With the days getting shorter, my early morning running has been on the treadmill lately. Boo on end of summer! I was loving those "bright as noon" pre-6am runs!

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    1. I am just dreading when it's going to be dark up until 7am :( Sooooo depressing.

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  8. Well living in South Florida, it is pretty much always hot... We do get some cooler weather but only for a couple months and those are still intermixed with hot days. I still run outside. I do have a treadmill but decided that is not good for my plantar fasciitis and really hate running on it now.... I used to be total opposite. I would like to say I get my butt up early and run before it gets too god awful hot, but I don't. Sometimes if I am lucky I get some shade cover but that is rare. My runs may not be the best on the unbearably hot days but I prefer to do my run than to not. I am thinking it may make me a better runner come cooler temps but who knows!

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    1. You sound just like me- I usually just suck it up and run in the heat, even if my performance suffers, because I'd rather sleep a little later. :) But now that school is started hopefully my morning runs will be cooler.

      I think running through the heat WILL make you a better runner!

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  9. It's true. There are other options. My favorite is to just make sure I'm hydrated and run in the heat. But sometimes the other two sound really great.

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    1. Yes! Some days it's okay if you're just not feeling the heat.

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  10. I will always choose a treadmill if one's available, but then I don't feel like I'm really preparing myself...So I ditched my gym membership. Heat makes it hard for me to even get motivated to run, but I know it's best in the long run!

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    1. Especially since probably most of the races you run in FL will be hot anyway!

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  11. I have a treadmill but in the summer (and mostly in the winter too) that is the last resort for me. I love being outside and I need the fresh air and natural light. No matter how awful the conditions are.

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    1. Same here! I mean, there are certain things I won't run in- mainly lightening, dangerous winds, and anything SLICK. I do not want to fall and hurt myself!

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  12. I am an option #1 kind of girl. I THOUGHT about using the treadmill yesterday for my track workout (20x400 in 93% humidity) but then I thought I might kill myself if I'm on a treadmill for that long!

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    1. I don't know what would be more horrible- doing those 400s in the humidity or on the treadmill! I hope whatever you chose went well!

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  13. I have spent SO MUCH TIME on the treadmill this summer. I did the same thing last summer and told myself that this year I would tough it out in the heat to make myself stronger... but it turns out I am too weak to go for that option! I don't mind the treadmill at all. With a good show, podcast or playlist everything is alll gooood!

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    1. I am glad you enjoy the treadmill and have access to one! All of us who don't live in FL wouldn't dare judge you!

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