100 degrees fahrenheit (38C) here in the Twin Cities today. Phew! I had planned a 7 mile run as part of my marathon training. At 9am, (already around 85 (29C) degrees), I checked the weather report and read this:
EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING - A PROLONGED PERIOD OF DANGEROUSLY HOT TEMPERATURES WILL OCCUR. THE COMBINATION OF HOT TEMPERATURES AND HIGH HUMIDITY WILL COMBINE TO CREATE A DANGEROUS SITUATION IN WHICH HEAT ILLNESSES ARE LIKELY. DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS…STAY IN AN AIR-CONDITIONED ROOM…STAY OUT OF THE SUN… AND CHECK UP ON RELATIVES AND NEIGHBORS.
Oh….well snow, ice and extreme cold were tough to run in during the winter, recent storms have made it nearly impossible lately and now this! Well, if I let the weather stop me, I’d never run. I’m not sure where the dumb, blind bravado came from but I dug it up from somewhere and ventured out. I learned that it is possible (although a little stupid), to run 7 miles in this heat, I also learned that I run slower at 90 (32C) degrees than I do at 70 (21C) but faster than I do at 0 degrees (-17C). I discovered that having your car parked at a 4 mile loop, loaded with powerade, makes the last 3 miles a little more bearable. The promise of a beer and lunch with a friend, overlooking the lake is excellent motivation (and perfect reward!). Another new fact – emergency contact details written on a Livestrong band with a sharpie do not endure excessive sweat (a precaution I took considering the warning above).
It’s a good job nothing went wrong!
I may have to consider getting them tattooed on my leg. I predicted that it would be most sensible to leave the compression socks at home this time – that, I think, is about the only sensible decision I made!
That said, I still love running at this time of year. I love the tree-lined trails. You cannot beat the feeling when the trail opens up, the sun beats down on your face and the sound of the lake lapping at the shore resonates at your side. Yes, it’s hard work and yes, it takes a looong time for the pink cheeks to dissipate, but it’s perfect! It’s not always this hot. There will be plenty of comfortable running opportunities this summer (mostly at 6am or 9pm), – there has to be…I have a marathon to train for! It’s not really necessary for me to run this far in this heat, I won’t do it again…..well……