Thursday, May 29, 2008

Running in the AZ Heat

I never considered myself a heavy sweater. That is until I moved to Phoenix last summer. I don't recommend a move to Phoenix in the middle of June. By August, we were starting to wonder if we made a mistake moving here. We ended up having over 30 consecutive days of 110+ temps. Don't get me wrong. I enjoy the heat. I'd take 100+ temperatures over below freezing temperatures any day.

Here are a few things I've learned to help with the heat:

1. Your body adapts to the heat. At first, running in super hot temps was utterly miserable. I am too addicted to quit, so I kept going anyways, and was able to enjoy it before too long (even though I'd come home dripping with sweat).

2. I am capable of getting up super early to run. I like sleeping in as much as the next guy, but when it's already in the 80s and 90s by 7 AM, getting up at 5 (or earlier) is much more motivating.

3. Always have plenty of fluids available. When I lived in Utah, I never took water or Gatorade with me unless I was going to be gone for more than an hour. In Phoenix, I needed it on runs lasting about 30 minutes.

4. Misery loves company. I started running with a group last summer, and even though the heat was awful, we had a great time socializing.

5. Only run in moisture-wicking gear. Duh.

6. Do part of your workout indoors. I coached cross-country and track at the middle school this year. It was much safer to keep the kids indoors for stretching, warm-up and cool-down. That way the kids were out of the heat as much as possible and had plenty of water available.

7. Possibly the most important tip I can give you is this: Wear a headband! They are very fashionable ;-) and extremely functional.

The heat is not something we need to fear. If we approach it wisely and are prepared, we can have a very successful and enjoyable summer.

This post is part of the Runner's Lounge Take It and Run Thursday, and can also be found in the Runner's Lounge Know-How section of their online community website.


merrymishaps said...

Yikes -- 110! Though, you don't have the humidity out there!

Nitmos said...

I can't imagine running in that heat constantly. In my parts, we are more prone to have to deal with the sub freezing weather and just a few 90 degree days in July/August.

Laura said...

Wow, Phoenix running sounds intense!!!

I'm not so good at the getting up early. I think to myself "it will be hotter if I sleep in," and then I sleep in anyway. I always forget how bad it is until I'm actually doing it and cursing myself for being lazy.

Run For Life said...

If I lived there I think I'd have to get up at 2am in order to run in a temperature I could stand then maybe I could progress, lol.

Frayed Laces said...

where can I get me one of those smokin, stylin headbands? You look like you mean business...a la 1983