We are certainly in the throes of summer heat now! If you are exercising outside, make sure to take a few precautions so you can continue to enjoy these beautiful days.

If you are going for a run, try to pick cooler times of the day like the early morning or later in the evening if you can when the sun is not so high in the sky.

Your pace is generally going to be about 10% slower depending on how high the temperature is, so don’t be too disappointed to see your speed go down, you will reap the benefits of heat training in the fall when it cools down by having a higher blood volume.

If you’re running for 30 minutes or less, packing water with you is probably not necessary. Anything over and hour and you are going to want to have a water stop somewhere on your route or pack water with you. There are several water fountains now around downtown, so if you plan properly, you may be able to avoid carrying a water bottle.

If you are biking, you don’t necessarily have to be as concerned with the heat. Riding will give you a breeze as you go, but pace yourself. If it’s hot, go a bit slower and maybe pick a flatter route than you would normally.

It’s easy to carry water on a bike if you have a bottle holder, so make sure to bring one or two bottles and take plenty of rest stops.

If you’re swimming, you may still need hydration. Even though you don’t notice it, you still sweat when you are working out in a pool. Your heart rate goes up and some people will get red in the face when they are working hard. A water bottle by the end of the pool isn’t a bad idea, especially if you are swimming in an outdoor pool.

For all these activities, don’t forget your sunscreen and reapply every hour. Set a timer on your phone so you don’t forget.

There’s lots to enjoy in the summer months around Frankfort. Just be smart and you will see the fitness gains add up!

Linda Word is an RRCA running coach, ACE Personal Trainer, ACE Nutrition Specialist, owner of ForWord Running Pacers and co-coach for 3 Sport Endurance. Contact her at forwordrunning @gmail.com to get started on your own fitness journey.


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