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On the Run with Sam: Tips for Summer Running

Tips for Summer Running

Samantha Simmons

Many of us have experienced the dreaded heat exhaustion. Whether from literally running ourselves thin, dehydration, or any other handful of reasons.

In May, at the Brooklyn Half Marathon, a runner died and 15 were hospitalized after the race went off with high temperatures and humidity. Runners were not acclimated to this type of heat yet, which ultimately took a turn for the worse.

To start, remember the importance of wearing sunscreen. Running with a sunburn is almost as bad as chafing.  When looking for sunscreen, try and find one that is sweat proof to maintain protection.

Second, make sure you are hydrated: Before, during, and after running. It is important to not forget about the during part. You might be going out for just a quick half-an-hour jaunt, but maybe think about taking a small handheld on those really hot days. Dehydration can come on quickly, especially in the heat. Luckily, or unfortunately, in Upstate NY, you are never too far away from a Stewarts or Cumberland Farms to grab something that quenches your thirst. If you’re looking for a supplement to your plain water, try enhancers like Nuun, Tailwind, or Maurten. The purpose of these products is to help you replace the electrolytes you lose in your sweat. You can find these products in our nutrition section in the store. If you need help, ask an employee to help you narrow down options and provide more information.

Third, find some shady places. From the Catskills to the Adirondacks and everywhere in between, there are plenty of shady spots to run to relieve you from what might be your usual way-to-sunny for hot days route. There are many trails covered by tree canopies and dirt floors that offer a drastic temperature difference from that of pavement covered routes. A great place to find new trails, dirt or not, is AllTrails. Here you can type in cities, parks, or trail names to get more information about the trail, see pictures, and look at other users' reviews of the trails. This is especially helpful to know what the condition of the trails are. There are usually up to date reviews, and the app will even track the route for you. You can also join our training programs for coaching and teammate guided runs twice a week and a training plan for the week. We have beginner groups up to marathon training. All with coach guidance to keep you safe and healthy. At Fleet Feet Albany, we also offer a running club. The Fleet Feet Running Club meets on Wednesdays at six pm and Saturdays at eight am. Check our weekly running newsletters and social media to stay up to date on where we are meeting. 

Fourth, dress appropriately for the weather. In NY it can be hard when it is 60 degrees one day and 90 the next, but it is important to not be overdressed in the summer heat. Try to wear light colors and a hat. Hats may seem a bit counter intuitive, adding more layers to your body, but they offer relief from direct sunlight hitting your head. We currently have a handful of light, bright, and fun color options in shirts, tanks, and shorts for men and women in the stores.

Fifth and last, above all, be safe. Let someone know where and when you’ll be running and let them know when you have returned, especially for longer efforts. In the heat, people are a little more on edge and more health problems come to the forefront like asthma. It is important to keep someone informed so that if something goes wrong, they’ll know to suspect that something isn’t right. This is probably a good rule of thumb in general, but even better in the summer months.

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