The weather is getting warmer and so it’s time to get the vests and shorts on. For a runner though, you need to take extra care. Here are my tips on how to run in the heat.

Before you head out for your training run under that bright yellow thing, there are a few things you need to think about:

  1. Suntan lotion – the last thing you want to do is get burnt and have to spend the next few days indoors while it’s sunny outside! Make sure you apply some sunscreen and protect yourself from UV rays before heading out. I would recommend a waterproof product that’s designed for those who play sports.
  2. Drink plenty water – drinking water will help to keep you cool as you run. Do this every day and not just on the days you train on. Dehydration can be a huge factor in heat-related illness so drink regularly and not wait until you feel thirsty. Try to avoid drinking too much water as this can lead to Hyponatremia, where the body’s sodium levels have become diluted to an abnormally low level.
  3. Have an electrolyte drink – you’re going to sweat a lot when running in warm weather so make sure you have an electrolyte drink to replace the minerals you lose. If it’s exceptionally warm then I’d recommend having an electrolyte drink before, during and after a training run. I recommend High 5 Electrolyte Tabs or Science in Sport Hydro Tabs. Another option is to cut up an orange and eat the slices.
  4. Train earlier in the day – I’d recommend getting up earlier in the morning and going for your run. It’ll be cooler and you’ll get a better quality session done before it gets too warm.
  5. Wear a hat – Wearing a cap or visor can be good to absorb sweat and keep it out of your eyes while you run. If it’s very warm, stick the cap/visor under the cold tap before you head out and it’ll help keep your head cool.

Essentially, running in the heat is all about being sensible and looking after yourself.

Run in the shade and out of the glare of the sun as much as you can.

Reduce the intensity of your runs to avoid overheating too quickly. Running at a lower intensity doesn’t mean that you will lose speed

On a long run, put out electrolyte drinks in key places or create a loop by your house, place a drink (or drinks) outside, do a few laps and take a drink at the end of each lap.

How do you cope with running in the heat?

Do you have any tried and tested methods you go to every time to help you run in the heat?