Friday, August 19, 2011

I'm Canadian. I don't do heat...

Where I live, in Cochrane, Alberta, 25c (77f) is a hot summer day.  We only get a handful of those, and those are usually days where I make an effort to get out early in the day for runs or rides.  Yes, those of you from the warm States can consider me a wimp, but in my defense, I run in cold weather.  Cold enough weather to use vaseline on any exposed skin.

So, I'm racing on Sunday.  It's a sprint triathlon with a pool swim.  I signed up for this race mainly for fun.  Now that the race is a few days away, the weather forecast is fairly reliable.  A high of 31c (88f).  Plus, since it's a pool triathlon, the starts are in heats.  I recently sent an email to change my swim time (yay!  I'm a much faster swimmer then when I registered initially.)  With that change, it means that my heat will be at about 11:00.  So, yeah, I'm doing the bike and run at the HOTTEST time of the day.

Yeah, I'm a wimp.  I have never run in temperatures that high...  Good thing I don't have a goal time for this race.

What are your strategies for dealing with the heat?


  1. Wish I could offer some advice...I obviously didn't deal with it as well as I should have at my 70.3...but we are talking 90's. :) However...hydrate, hydrate, what you can to stay cool, dump water on yourself. I'm guessing ice will not be offered. Just do your best to stay cool.

    Good luck and just have FUN!

  2. I too, am Canadian. I know I run better at -30 C than +30 C. That said, I've been working on it, and I'm better now than what I was.

    Part of the trick is to get out and run when it's hot, such as it is here. Obviously you have to pay careful attention to pace, hydration, nutrition, and all that good stuff. But the more you run when it feels like your heart and lungs are wrestling to see who comes out your throat first, even though you're barely moving, the more you'll get used to it. Plus, the more fit you are, and the better you run, you'll burn less fuel for a particular pace, meaning you don't have to get rid of so much heat.

    Wear as much white as you can, especially a cap.
    Hair in pony tail or bun.
    There's a trick where you wear arm warmers, white ones, and keep them wet.
    Don't be afraid to pour water down your shirt, or stuff ice in your bra, if it (the ice) is available.
    Tuck a wet sponge under your cap, under your neckline or shoulder straps, or waistband of your pants.
    On a longer training run, plan to do several laps past your house, and keep a cooler with some cold water.
    Investigate how you react to things like Nuun, or salt tabs.

  3. I run early in the morning to beat the heat. If I start too late, the weather gets to me and really slows me down. I'd rather wake up a few hours earlier than have a crappy run.