Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Strategies for High Heat and Humidity Races

Here are some strategies to beat the heat and humidity and safely cross the finish line...

Ditch the treadmill.  For 2 weeks leading up to your event, run outside.  When exercising in temperature in the upper 70s and higher your body needs to increase blood volume, retain electrolytes and switch on cooling processes (like sweating) earlier.  Training outdoors will help you do this.

Start off strong.  Get at least 7 hours of rest the night before the race - sleep deprivation makes it tougher for your body to regulated its temperature.

Lighten up.  Wear a tank top and shorts made from wicking material and stick with lighter colored clothes.  When air flows over exposed skin, it evaporates sweat, which helps lower body temperature.

Drink responsibly.  You only need to drink when you're thirsty.  Consuming too much liquid can lead to a condition that causes nausea and vomiting.

Take a break.  If you feel faintness dizziness, fatigue, loss of peripheral vision - possible signs of heat exhaustion, step out of the race, lie down and lift your legs higher than your heart.  If you feel better, get back in the race, but move at a slower pace.

Most importantly - listen to your body and dial it down if needed.

Info from Shape magazine June 2012.

Have any other hot race day strategies?

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  1. Drink a slushie - studies show lowering your body temp can help you run more comfortably!

  2. These are great tips! The sleep is really crucial for me.

  3. So important to follow these here where I live..it really hot...I bring salt with me for the longer runs


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