At the time of writing, the rain is pouring down from the sky, but summer is slowly approaching. The temperatures go up and the sun shows itself more often. Delicious! Some runners find the heat terrible and avoid it like the plague, while others immerse themselves in it and prefer to go outside in the warmest of the day. Whatever category you fall into, these tips are for you! What’s the best way to get through the summer running?
You can’t control the temperature yourself, so just accept it.
By accepting the warmth and adapting, you will continue to run with much more pleasure. It makes no sense to fight against it because if you are unlucky it is warmer than 20-25 degrees for a few weeks and you just want to keep training? By keeping your attitude positive, you also pump your brain a bit and it always goes easier.
Heat acclimatization is the altitude training of the holidaymaker.
Top athletes are often at beautiful training locations abroad at an altitude of 1500 to 2000 meters. They do this because the thinner air creates more red blood cells, so they usually perform better in their competitions at sea level. The heat causes the blood plasma to increase in volume. This allows more blood to flow to the skin to cool down, without compromising blood flow to the muscles. This physiological (temporary) adjustment ensures that at cooler temperatures the heart can pump more blood, which also positively affects your performance. In addition to the fact that it also feels a lot more comfortable if it is a bit colder on race day than during training.
Adjust the time and/or location of your training.
Running in the morning is most comfortable at the time of a heat wave. It is not very hot after the cooler night. In the afternoon the temperatures can rise considerably and the sun shines the brightest. In the evening, the heat can sometimes linger for quite a long time, especially in urban areas with little greenery.
Do you live in a wooded area or do you have a park nearby? Then it is advisable to look for the shade. In the shade, the temperature is a lot lower and the worst heat/humidity pulls into the ground. That really makes it a lot more pleasant to run in.
Beware of ticks and other insects!
If we then flock into the forest this summer, watch out for ugly sting insects and especially ticks. If you are not stuck with a thick itchy bump, it can also be a nasty inflammation for which you have to take the antibiotics… Or with ticks, you run the risk of getting Lyme disease. Fortunately, most ticks do not have Lyme but you never know. Always check your body for ticks after walking and keep an eye on the spot after a tick bite. If a red circle arises, you must immediately contact the doctor. Make sure you always have good drawing pliers so that you can remove the insect properly.
Pro tip: Buy a bottle of anti-bug spray with 50% DEET and spray your body before you run. This protects against mosquitoes, insect bites, and ticks.
Protect yourself from harmful UV radiation.
We all know that UV radiation is harmful to us: it can significantly increase the risk of getting skin cancer. It goes without saying that we have to protect ourselves from it. Apply a high sunscreen factor at all times. At least factor 30, but 50 is not crazy either. And yes, even if you have a brown or dark skin color of yourself, you should apply yourself. Any skin can burn. A special sunscreen for sports is more resistant to sweat and therefore offers greater protection.
Wearing sunglasses with special lenses against UV radiation helps to protect your eyes from the sunlight. We have also written a blog about this. There are many types of sunglasses available so read carefully!
Body coverings are sometimes not even that crazy.
As a child, who always had to wear a white cotton t-shirt at the pool or at the beach in the summer? Sensible parents do not let their children play (almost) poodle naked in the bright sun by the water. The chance of (serious) combustion is very high here. Water reflects sunlight, making the radiation stronger. Nowadays there are a lot of fine UV-resistant swimsuits for children for sale.
When we run we sweat, or there are all water droplets on our skin. In the summer, many runners choose as little clothing as possible, but this exposes a lot of skin to the sun. It is therefore not even that crazy to just wear clothes while running. A layer of dust lowers the UV radiation on the skin by a little bit. The lighter in color and thinner materials the less, but every little bit helps. Therefore, always lubricate your entire body anyway, and not just the uncovered body parts.
And men without hair on their heads: wear a cap! Not only does the scalp remain protected from the sun, but you can also keep the heat out a bit. Also, if they were interested, they can also SMP or Scalp Micropigmentation.