Not all running is created equal, especially when you consider that there can be so many different weather conditions ready to create hurdles. When it comes to running outside in the weather the best advice we can give you is to BE PREPARED! You don’t want to get out there and realize that you are ill-equipped to deal with the rain or the intense sun. If you are prepared, you give yourself a much better chance at finishing your run safely.
Cold Weather Running
The cold weather can be a pain for runners. Cold weather is not the most ideal climate for running, and it’s very important to let your body acclimate to this extreme. When it comes to deciding what to wear remember that moisture wicking socks are your friend. It’s also a good idea to dress in layers, and always wear less than you think you need. Once you start building momentum your heart rate will go up and you will start to sweat. When your body is hot and the temperature is cold you put yourself at a higher risk of developing hypothermia. Remember that running during the winter is all about maintaining what you have already built. Don’t try to be the best or the fastest during this time. Take good care of yourself and listen to your body.
Rain, Rain, Go Away
April showers might bring May flowers, but they also bring a lot of trouble for avid runners. If you feel more comfortable cross training or running on a treadmill when it’s raining outside we don’t blame you. For those hardcore runners who just won’t quit, we have some advice. It’s important to consider what to wear to keep the rain off of your face as much as possible. A hat can do the trick, and if it’s cold you can even add a beanie underneath for added warmth. Visibility might be more limited in a downpour, so invest in a good pair of anti-fog goggles. You will want material that wicks away moisture, especially when it comes to your socks. Rainy day runs are perfect conditions for blisters to develop, so make sure to avoid that by adding petroleum jelly to your feet as well.
Running in the Heat
If cold and rain weren’t enough there is also extreme heat to consider. Running in the heat is something that your body does not want to do, so it’s important to build up gradually while letting your body acclimatize. When it’s hot outside we sweat more often than normal, which means that our bodies are losing a lot of moisture. This is why it’s more crucial than ever to stay hydrated. This means not only drinking water but also keeping your electrolyte levels up with sports drinks and even a snack. You can even bring an extra bottle of water along with you to periodically pour onto your head to create a cooling effect. If you begin to notice any signs of dehydration, such as cramping, faintness, heart palpitations, or light-headedness you should head home immediately.
If you have any questions about running in different types of weather call Dr. Mitchell Wachtel at (978) 794-8406 to make a consultation appointment in our Haverhill, North Andover, or Lowell offices.