by : Jodi Jordan

Well, it is that time of year again Folks, and it is heating up.  If there is one thing I love about Texas, it is our ability to sit on a patio year-round.  If there is one thing I hate about Texas, it is the heat and humidity that descends upon us in the late spring and hovers through September. 

That said, the dangerous combination of heat, humidity and running can be avoided by acclimating to it safely.  The safest way to acclimate to the Texas heat is to take a slow and gradual approach.   It takes about two weeks for your body to get used to the rising temps, and you do not want to push it.  I have 5 tips to help you acclimate safely: 

  1. Run EARLY in the morning.  I like to hit the road between 5:15 am and 6:00am.  If you cannot get out that early, try to run in the evening.  Avoid running during the hottest part of the day, 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm.  If you cannot run in the morning, pick a route with shade.
  2. HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE and then HYDRATE some more.  Drink plenty of water throughout the day before your run.  Limit your caffeine and alcohol intake. 
  3. Slow the pace. Back off a wee bit.  It’s only for a few weeks and your body will thank you for it.
  4. Pay special attention to your body.  Look out for any feelings of dizziness or nausea, goosebumps, or absence of sweat.  If you encounter any of these symptoms, you will need to stop running for the day as you are experiencing the early stages of heat stroke.
  5. Dress the part.  Wear light weight, light colors and technical running gear.  Consider running with a water bottle or planting water somewhere.