Ask a Physical Therapist

BH-14-23317  retouching  TURNER

What are some tips for running in the heat?

“I love running in warm and hot weather, but there are things you need to keep in mind.  You need to know that you will be 10 degrees warmer when you run than the ambient temperature outside.  So if it’s a wonderful 70 degrees, it will feel like 80.  Therefore, water is key.  Always have a source of water to replenish what you are losing through sweat.
1. Hydration:   If your time running will exceed what you can carry on your fuel belt, have a plan to refill your water bottles.  When I was running my “training run” for my first half marathon, I had a friend meet me at the midway point (1 ¼ hour) at a designated spot to fill up my water bottles. 
2.  Wear tech gear.  Moisture wicking material is a must.  The old saying that “cotton is rotten” is true.  Cotton collects the weight of the lost fluid, and you end up carrying it on your skin. 
3. If you have new gear such as new running shoes, bra, top or shorts; don’t try it out on a long run or race. It could cause irritation and leave blisters.  For long training runs or races in the heat, try using a product like “Body Glide”.  It can really help to keep areas, such as your shoulder, where material tends to rub and cause chafing and bleeding. 
4.  On longer runs in the heat, it is good to have a snack to replace some of the sugar or electrolytes you lost. 
5.  After a run, use a cold wet towel to cool off your face, neck, and head.  And last on my personal checklist is to have a dry bath towel to put on your car seat, because you will be a sweaty but satisfied mess going home,” Kim Turner, PT, CHT Advanced Physical Therapy Center Co-Owner
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