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Training In Extreme Heat

January 11, 2013

The extremely high temperatures in Central Victoria over the past week have had me thinking about training in hot weather. We have had day after day after day of high 30s and into the 40s. Definitely not conducive to getting outside and exercising.

But I’m not willing to use the weather as an excuse, and neither would any avid exerciser. As any keen cyclist knows, the weather is never perfect. It’s always too windy or hot or wet or cold. Finding an excuse not to exercise is easy peasy. Getting out there and doing it is the hard bit.

Most days I start at 4.30, walking the dogs for about 90 mins before heading off to the gym. This solves two problems. Firstly the early mornings during hot weather are idyllic and the perfect time to train. Secondly by 7am my exercise is done for the day. Unless I choose to do an evening session, my mind doesn’t have to think about it at all for the day.

Some of my tips for training in hot weather:

Start early

If the day is expected to be extremely hot, consider making it a light training day.  This will not disrupt your training regime, and could even enhance it

Drink plenty of fluids, taking small sips often. Drink before you begin to feel thirsty.  By then you are becoming dehydrated.

Drink more than usual while exercising and continue staying hydrated during the day.

Perhaps you could do an indoor session? Or a session in the pool? Mix it up a bit more than you normally would. Your body will love you for this.

Wear light, comfortable clothing, suitable for the type of activity you have chosen

These are just the tips that help me train in extreme heat without any problems. I’d love to hear your tips.

Here are some extra tips that were given to me by my good training buddy Nadine:

Wear good quality wicking exercise gear

Don’t wear cotton or other natural fibres as they get wet and stay that way : clammy skin, chills, and chaffing

Wear a cool band around your neck (available at all good sports stores), neckerchief filled wetting agent crystals

Pour some water over pulse points and even neck and head so that evaporation helps the cooling effect.

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