Summer is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy the nice weather but the heat can be a challenge for runners who like to get active outdoors. Without taking proper precautions, summer running and working out outdoors can be dangerous. In this article we list a couple helpful ways to stay safe while staying active in the summer.
You should always keep your body hydrated, but when summer running in the heat it’s especially important. The hot weather can speed up dehydration and could potentially cause heat stroke. To help prepare for summer running you should always hydrate before your run and bring fluids such as water or a sports drink with you. If you don’t like running with a water bottle, try out a running belt or backpack equipped with a water bottle or tank. Or try mapping your summer running route near your home, gas stations or public drinking fountains so you know if you get thirsty your not too far away from a location with liquids.
Time and Location
Take advantage of the long summer days by going for a run in the morning or evening when temperatures are coolest. Location is important too. Try running near a body of water for a cool breeze or a trail with trees providing shade. Asphalt retains heat and sends it back upwards, so when choosing your running trail think about what type of running surface the trail has to offer.
In the summer you should stay away from wearing dark colours and steer towards light coloured, loose fitting clothing. Tight clothes won’t let the breeze flow through and you’ll end up sweating more and increasing your body temperature. Cotton clothing will make you sweat more compared to moisture controlling fabrics and athletic gear. Last but not least, having the proper breathable socks will help make sure your feet stay dry in all temperatures
Pace yourself. Keep an eye on yourself and your body. Your body temperature rises quicker when it’s hotter outside and it’s important to not push yourself if you feel you aren’t preforming the same when it’s hot out. If you feel cramps, get dizzy, sweat more than usual, get a headache, vomit, have an increased pulse or a weak pulse you should take a break or get help.
Sunscreen helps protect against UV Rays but also keeps your body temperature cooler. Even on overcast days sunscreen is important.