In the peak of summer it can be impossible to avoid the heat. Even the coldest time of day can be hot. Training in the heat can be uncomfortable but beneficial. Here are 5 of the most important things to consider while training in the heat.
Should you train in the heat? Well there is growing body of evidence showing that there are some significant benefits that come from training in the heat. You can read more about these benefits here. But even if you wanted to avoid training in the heat, at a certain point it is impossible. So when you get out for your next session in the hot sun, keep these important points in mind.
Certainly you have heard this piece of advice many times but there is a reason for it. Hydration is important. when you are training in high temperatures, increased perpetration can quickly lead to dehydration. Bring enough fluids with you and/or plan a route with plenty of places to stop and get something to drink. A sport drink that will also help replace the minerals you loose with sweat is best but even just water is better than nothing.
See here the most important hydration questions and answers.
If the weather has changed quickly and/or you just have not been training in the heat, don’t to too much too soon. Your body does adapt to the heat when you are regularly exposed. Studies have shown it takes 10-14 days to acclimate to heat. after this time frame your performance will not be impacted as much as when first exposed to the heat.
Don’t do Too Much
You might need to slow down in the heat. This is okay! Many people ask if they should train based on pace or heartrate/effort and this question is particularly relevant in the heat. When it is hot your pace might not be what you plan but you can still stay in your planned training zones based on heart rate. Your body is still working hard and you are benefiting from training even if it is not your fastest session ever. With a 2PEAK training plan make sure to adjust your battery after training in the heat. Do not go too long or hard because heat stroke is a real risk.
If it is simply too hot to start or continue a training session, find an alternative. It is okay to stop and or do something else. 2PEAK training plans are dynamic and allow you to change your training. When you do something different than planned, the plan will adapt and make sure you still do the best training sessions to reach your goal.
Plan and Prepare
Being prepared and having a good plan can help any training session. This is especially important when you are training in the heat. Plan a route that has more shade. Staying out of cities if possible helps. Concrete in urban areas retains heat without plants and trees. Also make sure that you wear light clothing and sun screen before you go out.
This might also interest you: 5 Reasons to Follow a Training Plan