10 More Things I've Learned From Running: The Summer Hot as Hell Edition

It is very, very hot in the summer where I live.  Like sap your will to live 100 degrees every day hot.  I am a delicate flower so I was worried the heat would affect my running.  I only started running a year ago and it played a big part in helping me lose 60 pounds.  It's important to me to keep going despite the heat.  Some days are better than others but I'm learning a lot.  

10 Things I've Learned From Running - The Summer Hot as Hell Edition:

1.  Running in 100 degree weather is stupid.  It's too hot and feels like death.   But sometimes it's the only way to get in a run after you couldn't bring yourself to get up at the crack of dawn.  You will live through it.  And if running in the heat sucks enough, maybe that will inspire you to not hit snooze next time.
The dashboard in my car trying to convince me not to run when I get home.
 2. Frogg Toggs can help you stay cooler.  Do not fool yourself into thinking they are the equivalent of central air installed inside your compression shorts.  You will still be hot and sweaty and it will still feel like you are running through pea soup.  But it will help.  When I first got my Frogg Togg, I couldn't figure out how to use it.  It's the size of a hand towel so it seemed natural to try it around my neck like a towel.  But that was too bulky and I hated it.  I ended up cutting it in half and then cutting one of the 1/2s into 3 strips.  I put one over each shoulder and one on my lower back in the waist band of my compression shorts.  I feel confident I look like an idiot and that people in the park think I'm a lunatic.  Oh, well.
My Frogg Togg is a nice easy to spot yellowish green.  One under each strap of my sports bra.  Stylin and profilin.
3. Run slower when it's hot.  Jeff Galloway says so.  I've been reading a running book by him and that's one of the best things I got out of it.  He's got a whole formula for how much to slow down based on how high the temperature is above 60 degrees.  I have a formula based on how much you feel like you want to die.  When you feel like you want to die, slow down.  If you still feel like you want to die, slow down some more.  And if you still feel like you want to die, you're not listening and need to get it through your thick skull to slow down.  So what if you're barely making forward progress?  Progress is progress no matter how small.  Pretty sure I learned that from Pinterest.
Told you so.
4. I need at minimum 2 sweatbands to run in heat.  I will also require a shirt to wipe my face on.  I find it confusing that some girls run without a shirt in just a sports bra.    What do they wipe their face with when the sweat starts trickling down their nose?  Am I the only sweaty beast out there?

5.  If you are a sweaty beast like me, you should get an iPod shuffle to run with.   It's super light.  It clips to your shirt eliminating the where to store it issue and isn't distracting while being stored.  Clipped to your shirt also makes it a lot less likely to stop working as a result of the massive sweat coating your entire body.  I can't believe I ever relied on my iPhone for music when I run.  Shuffle for the win!
Shuffle on, Frogg Toggs soaking in the sink.  Preparing to face hell.
6.  Take water breaks.  When I first started running last fall, I ran straight through whatever time or distance I was supposed to be completing that day.  For some reason, I thought being able to complete it without stopping was part of the challenge.  I blame that on Couch to 5K.  But now that I know stopping doesn't render me incapable of starting again for the rest of the day, I take water and bathroom breaks.  Especially when I'm trying to run more than 3 miles in the heat.  It's okay to take a break.  Then start again.  You can do it.

7. Try not to get carried away on water breaks.  It's easy to do.  The water is so refreshing.  Sometimes it's even nice and cool on a hot day!  So you suck down a little more than you maybe should.  Especially by the 2nd or 3rd water break.  Feeling the water sloshing while you run is not a good thing.  It's distracting.  And if you have the running attention of a gnat like me, you should avoid creating extra distractions for yourself.  I'm not saying you need to take a sip, swish and spit it out or something.  I'm just saying, don't get crazy.

8. You should wear sun tan lotion.  Especially on long runs when you know you'll be out there over an hour.  Or you may end up with sports bra tan lines.  Or in my red headed case, sports bran burn lines.
Out of focus and yet I think we can all still see the trainwreck.  Less visible to people at work than the raccoon style burn on my face thanks to sunglasses.  But the sports bra definitely creates nice clean lines.
9. The seats in public restrooms are far more filthy than I ever realized.  For example, I never realized they are covered in sweat.  I say this as someone who knows for a fact her entire body is covered in sweat when she takes a bathroom break mid run in the heat and that other people that use it must be, too.  I kinda have the urge to hurl just thinking about it.  Hover, ladies.  And be quick.  Just sayin.
I didn't even know my shoulders had sweat glands.
10.  I like running in cool weather.  Sometimes while running, I actually distract myself from the heat by thinking about how crazy it is that someone could successfully run a whole marathon in the heat.  That's nuts.  It's so hot.  How can they possibly keep going that long that fast?  I start thinking I need to go watch a marathon in 90 degree weather just to see how many crazies fall out from dehydration or heat exhaustion.

Previous Installments of Stuff I've Learned From Running:
10 Things I've Learned From Running


Jenn said...

These were great and made me laugh out loud a few times :) We've been lucky that we've only had a few weeks over 100 here, but I got my ass up at the butt crack of dawn to run, cuz I'm a wuss...btw, 72 degrees with 97% humidity still feels like Hell at 5:15 in the morning.

Sami Bookout said...

Hi Kim!
I love your 10 things :)
I try and do all of my running in the morning when it's cooler (during the summer). I can't handle the heat while I'm running, I'm kinda a drama queen like that. :)

Jeff Galloway is awesome, I've read up on some of his running philosophies and I find him inspiring. He makes it doable for everyone.

Good luck on your next 10 things!

Shana Norris said...

Too funny!! I agree with pretty much everything here. I haven't had a run where I actually felt dehydrated all summer long ... until last Wednesday. I REALLY slowed things down and was able to finish my 5-miler.

Eve Hateley said...

A 30-minute run leads to awesome mental and physical benefits. One thing that I loved running is free! I don't need to pay to the gym, I just love running while enjoy watching the environment.


Gwen said...

Hi! Just found your blog, and I love it! I think we are kindred spirits: I won't wear shoes in my house either, and I have a fondness for reality tv. :)

Have a great weekend, and use sun screen! :)

The Mommy said...

OMG your back! Ouch!

The Dose of Reality said...

I have been hovering for decades now. I will take this as a confirmation that I have made the right decision! Those Frog Tog things look amazing. I'd rather be alive and have them sticking out of my pants and under my shirt strap than lying in the road panting!! --Lisa

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