As the temperature continues to stay up and the sun shines bright, summer can make for a sticky (and hot) time for runners to get their miles in. While the warmth may make your runs more enjoyable (obviously, because summer is the best), it’s crucial to take extra precautions to stay safe and comfortable. In this blog post, we will explore 7 tips for running in high-humidity weather, allowing you to make the most of this vibrant season while maintaining your running routine.
Hydration is Key When Running in High Humidity Weather
One of the most important factors to consider when running in the summer is proper hydration. With increased sweat rates, it’s essential to replenish fluids lost during your runs. Ensure you drink water regularly throughout the day, and consider carrying water on your runs or planning your routes near water fountains.
If you’re going for longer runs, you may benefit from sports drinks that replenish electrolytes lost through sweating. You might even need some electrolytes if your runs aren’t too long, but the temps and humidity are high – and you happen to be a salty sweater. Take a look at your face when you’re done running. See any white streaks along your forehead or cheeks? Chances are those white streaks are salt. Replenish the salt loss with an electrolyte drink.
Also, post-run ice cream always helps. Replace what you’ve lost running with ice cream. …go for a salted caramel flavor to get some of that salt lost back in.
…only half kidding here on the ice cream. Maybe.
Time Your Runs Wisely When Running in High Humidity Weather
To beat the summer heat, plan your runs during the cooler parts of the day. Typically, early mornings or late evenings are ideal for avoiding the scorching midday sun. Keep an eye on the weather forecast and plan your workouts accordingly.
Just keep in mind it does tend to start getting cool until the sun goes down. Which means you should probably run in the morning. Because the morning is the best. (Hi! I’m a morning person ;))
Dress Appropriately for Running in High Humidity Weather
Wearing the right attire can make a significant difference in your comfort during summer runs. Opt for lightweight, moisture-wicking clothing that allows your skin to breathe. Consider wearing a hat or visor to shield your face from direct sunlight, and sunglasses too! Sunglasses and hats can help make your run more enjoyable as they will decrease your need to squint in the bright sun. Believe it or not, squinting takes extra effort and can take away from your run.
Adjust Your Pace and Expectations for Running in the High Humidity
Hot and humid conditions often affect your running performance. Be prepared to adjust your pace and expectations accordingly. Accept that you may not be able to maintain the same speed or intensity as in cooler months. Listen to your body, slow down when necessary, and focus on maintaining a consistent effort level rather than chasing personal bests.
And take a break if necessary!
Seek Shaded Routes to Stay Cool
If you complete most of your runs near home, odds are you know which areas are shaded and which are full sun all the time. To help yourself during the high humidity, look for running routes that provide shade, such as tree-lined trails or a park with ample coverage. By staying out of direct sunlight, you can lower the risk of overheating and sunburn. Additionally, shaded paths tend to be cooler, offering some relief during your runs. (Just a little relief, but it helps!)
Oh, and regardless of where you run, be sure to lather on the sunscreen. The shade helps, but you want to stay protected from the strong sun during your whole run. Lather up the sunscreen, being sure to get your face as well as your shoulders.
Stay Cool During Your Runs with Cooling Methods
If the heat becomes unbearable, try using cooling methods to regulate your body temperature. Consider running with a handheld water bottle or wearing a hydration pack that allows you to wet your head or neck during your runs. You can also carry a small towel soaked in cold water to wipe your face and neck. One of these cooling towels is perfect!
Orrrr, you can plan your route and run when sprinklers happen to be going off. Typically this is early in the morning. So, again, we have another reason why morning running is the best. Less heat and sprinklers. Win-Win!!
Listen to Your Body When Running in High Humidity Weather
Running in the summer places additional stress on your body. The humidity amplifies that stress, especially when you are not used to it. Pay close attention to how you feel during your runs. If you experience symptoms like dizziness, nausea, or excessive fatigue, you need to stop, find shade, and hydrate (preferably with some electrolytes if you’re a heavy sweater). Pushing through extreme discomfort or ignoring warning signs can lead to heat exhaustion or heatstroke.
And no one has time for that.
Conclusion for 7 Tips for Running in High Humidity Weather
Running in the summer offers unique experiences and challenges for both seasoned and novice runners. By following these 7 tips for running in high-humidity weather, you can ensure safe and enjoyable runs throughout the warmer months. Remember to prioritize hydration, adjust your expectations, and stay vigilant about your body’s signals. Summer running is a challenge, but you’re working hard and that hard work will pay off come race day.
And be sure to grab an ice cream cone after a hot run for good measure after a hot run.
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