With rising temperatures and stifling humidity, summer brings with it a whole new set of challenges for runners. With temperatures set to soar over this weekend, we’ve put together our tips to help you stay cool, comfortable and safe in the sunshine.
Take it slow
Your body needs time to adapt to the change in temperature - especially after months of bracing winter runs. Steadily build up your tolerance to warmer weather slowly and safely, even if that just means swapping a shady route for a sunnier one once a week. Don’t forget plenty of sunscreen!
Shorten your warm-up
The summer months mean your muscles won’t take as long to warm up as they do during winter. Reduce your warm-up session to preserve your energy and streamline your run.
Wear the right kit
To set yourself up for running success, you should wear breathable garments that wick away moisture and allow body heat to escape easily. Avoid uncomfortable bunching, rubbing and chafing by choosing lightweight, unrestrictive materials that enhance your run - not hinder it.
Run at the coolest parts of the day
Either first thing in the morning, just after sunrise, or in the evening, just before the sun sets. Running at these times allows you to avoid the strongest heat of the day and run at a more comfortable temperature.
Get enough liquids in
Make sure you’re drinking enough water, not just while you’re running, but 24/7. Getting enough liquids helps to protect you from dehydration and overheating, impacting your running performance and potentially your health.
Create some shade by wearing a running cap and invest in a good quality pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays. Don’t forget plenty of sunscreen - especially the spots often forgotten, like your ears or the backs of your hands.
Listen to your body
No one knows your body better than you. Don’t push yourself unnecessarily in the heat. Read up on the signs of heat exhaustion to help you recognise them before they become an issue and plan your route carefully to include shady spots. Pace yourself, stay safe and take your time.