Maybe I’m a little biased because I haven’t been running a ton lately, but I think I’ve managed to stay pretty positive about running in the heat and humidity so far this summer. Usually by this time I am constantly complaining and counting the days until fall. We usually go to Maine at the end of July which is a perfect break from the gross Baltimore weather. I know that many of you have it worse than me (I was in Florida in May and it was already brutal!) but today I am going to talk about why summer running isn’t all that bad…in fact, it can be very good in some ways!
1. You don’t need to think about what to wear.
All winter I would constantly be checking the weather to see exactly how many layers I would need for my run. Getting dressed took forever. Its harder to move in all those layers, and there’s so much more laundry. In the summer, I just know its going to be hot so I always just throw on shorts and a tank top. They get super gross so I’m doing laundry all the time anyway, but at least it’s less clothes to wash.
2. It’s easier to remember to hydrate.
I find that in the winter I don’t feel like I’m sweating as much so I sometimes don’t drink as much water as I should. When its hot out it’s easier to pay attention to our thirst and we should constantly be hydrating!
3. More daylight hours.
It’s nice that its hardly ever dark anymore when I’m out running. I remember in the winter some days it was still pitch black out when I finished my run. This also makes it easier to get up in the morning (not that it’s usually a problem for me). I’m sure this is the same for those who run in the evening- its light out until like 9pm lately!
4. Suffer now, benefit later.
We will all get so good at running in the heat and humidity, that we will be SO fast when the weather cools off! This equals lots of PRs in fall races.
5. More people are out running.
I guess this can be a positive or a negative. If you want to be out running all by yourself, you may not be able to do that during the summer. But when you pass other runners who are also drudging through the heat, you can give each other a wave or smile and know that someone else is sharing in your pain.
6. The hot weather forces you to slow down.
Don’t expect your easy run pace to be the same as it is in the winter (at least not at first). Your body will need some time to adapt to the heat but it will probably still feel harder all summer long. Use it as an opportunity to learn what a comfortable/conversation pace feels like based on feel (can you sing the Brady Bunch theme song?) rather than by the numbers on your watch.
7. You may get a nice tan.
But remember to wear sunscreen:)
8. It may force you to get your run done first thing in the morning.
If you’re not usually a morning runner, this may be the time to try it out. I shake my head when I see runners out on the weekends at 1pm. Knowing that it will only get hotter should be a good motivator to get you out the door first thing in the morning.
9. You will never have to worry about ice. And wind feels good.
Remember 6 months ago when it would snow every other day and then melt and then freeze? It was a little scary (and annoying) to deal with dodging ice all winter. And that wind chill that would make it feel like –15 degrees? I definitely don’t miss the feel of that smacking me in the face.
10. You might even look forward to an ice bath.
How hard is it to get in an ice bath after running in the cold? But when I come in from a hot run, it actually doesn’t sound too bad.
So embrace the sweat. Appreciate the ice-free sidewalks. Smile at the other runners who are suffering alongside you. Wear sunscreen, and think about how fast you will be this fall!
What are some other positives of summer running?
If you had to choose- would you rather run in heat and humidity or cold and wind?