Tips for Running in Humidity

(Adapted from: Article from Runner’s World – http://www.runnersworld.com/running-tips/tips-for-running-in-humidity)

It’s not (just) the heat that matters! Ways to cope with the muggy weather:

  1. Humidity makes warm summer runs even more taxing because the higher the moisture content of the air, the hotter it feels.
  2. If you are dehydrated, your body goes into survival mode – watch out for nausea, it may be difficult to digest sports drink & gels.
  3. HYDRATE throughout the day to prevent this!
  4. Side stitches can also occur if you are overheated – due to shallow and uneven breathing.
  5. Be wary of your heart rate too, because it will escalate as your heart and lungs are working overtime to deliver oxygen throughout your body. Wearing a heart rate monitor is not a bad idea to make sure you are in reasonable zones.
  6. If you start to lose control over body/mind mechanics like form and footing are getting sloppy, you start to feel dizzy or disoriented, and/or you are feeling chilled or goosebumpy – STOP RUNNING!
  7. The faster you run, the more body heat you generate. Do your hard runs when humidity is at it’s lowest. It’s also important to recognize that feeling sluggish on a sticky day doesn’t indicate a lack of fitness or a lapse in mental toughness—it’s your body’s physical response to a stressful environment.
  8. Body size is one factor—the more body mass you have the easier it is for you to overheat.
  9. Age is another variable—Sorry guys the older you are the less you are able to cool yourself effectively.
  10. Sweat content varies: Some people lose more sodium in their perspiration than others, and that can impact performance and increase risk of cramps if these salty sweaters don’t take in enough electrolytes.
  11. Where you live also plays a role – so check the forecast and refer to what the heat index will be for the hours that you like to run. Humidity above 40% can impact performance.
  12. In those conditions, you should opt for a treadmill in AC. If you don’t have access to one, go for a shaded path, or run close to water and take walk breaks. It’s essential to hydrate properly and let go of any time-based goals—run by feel instead of pace.
  13. Heat exhaustion and heat stroke early signs: fatigue, nausea, dizziness, headaches, tingly skin, and confusion. Call it quits if you experience any of them—even if you haven’t reached the end of your run or the finish line yet.

On a positive note, any training you do now will only make your fall runs all the more enjoyable.

By | 2014-03-06T15:04:16+00:00 July 24th, 2013|Running|0 Comments

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