It's Hot

So, It's Hot. What Should I Wear? 

It's hot. And on top of that you're heading out for a long training run or perhaps you race this weekend and the forecast is calling for hot with a unpleasant side of unbearable humidity.

Here are some tips to master running in the heat:

1. Wear wicking fabrics. 

Your running clothes, socks included, should be made of a wicking technical fiber. Technical fabrics pull moisture away from your body, keeping you cooler. Avoid clothes that are 100 percent cotton !!Cotton fabrics absorb sweat, which weighs down the clothing and can cause chafing.

2. Wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothes.

If you are running in hot weather, choose lightweight, loose-fitting clothing to wear. For running shorts, choose longer, loose-fitting styles which protect more of your legs from the sun and also helps to keep you cooler by offering more ventilation. Tops and bottoms should be light in color because light colors reflect the sun. Dark colors absorb the sun's heat and can cause you to overheat much faster than whites or pastels.

3. Keep cool with a broad-billed running hat.

Wear a hat with a significant brim to keep the sun off your face. Some running hats also offer a "sun skirt" that provides additional protection for your ears and neck. Choose a hat that is made out of a technical fabric to help wick the sweat away from your head. Visors also work well for this. Avoid cotton baseball hats, which can trap heat and cause your body temperature to rise.

4. Don't forget sunglasses (and sunscreen).

Wear a pair of lightweight sunglasses designed for sports activities. These models typically offer better coverage than casual-style sunglasses. The American Optometric Association recommends sunglass lenses that block out 99 to 100 percent of both the UVA and UVB rays for best eye protection. Protect your skin as well and don't forget the sunscreen !!

5. Water bottles, hydration packs and fuel belts. 

Running in hot weather will cause your body to sweat and lose both water and electrolytes in the process. If you don't replace them when you are running, you could become dehydrated and are at an increased risk of a heat-related illness. If water fountains are not plentiful along your running route, carry a water bottle, hydration pack or fuel belt. There are several options available, depending upon how much water your need and where on your body you want to carry it. Aim to drink between 4 an 8 ounces of water every 15 to 20 minutes.


Karen Craney
Training Program Coordinator
RRCA Certified Coach
Fleet Feet Sports Certified Coach
Fleet Feet Sports, Gaithersburg, MD

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