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This Saturday August 16th is the Melon Run at Kingwood Park High School. This race begins at 7:30 AM, before the heat makes it nearly impossible to keep running. Continuing with exercise during a sizzling summer can seem difficult, but staying on your feet is important. With a few extra precautions you can keep running, even on long, hot days.
The most important thing you can do for yourself while exercising or running in the heat is to stay hydrated. Your body stays cool by sweating, but if you don’t drink enough to replace the water that is sweated out, problems can occur. Wear light-colored clothing and breathable shoes. Light colors don’t absorb as much heat as dark colors. Let your body and feet hang loose a bit more when it’s extremely hot outside. Also, wear socks that wick away moisture from your feet. You are likely to sweat more if you exercise when temps are high, and you don’t want to end up with a foot fungus or blisters from too much moisture in your shoes. Last but not least, don’t forget the sunscreen. UV rays can come through the clouds, so even if the sun isn’t hot you should apply it every day.
Not only is it important to prepare for your run, it’s important to pay attention to your body. Understand your limits and don’t try to push yourself too hard. If it is 90 degrees outside you don’t want to try and set new records, instead hold yourself back a little bit. Never go on a new trail when the heat is unbearable. If you get lost and don’t have enough water, you could end up suffering from heat exhaustion or dehydration. As always, consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen or before taking any medications. Many medications can intensify heat-related conditions such as nausea, dehydration, and dizziness.
If you have more questions about running in the summer heat, call Dr. Marco Vargas and Dr. Joyce Lee at (888) 784-5335 to schedule an appointment at Foot & Ankle Associates in Houston.
Photo Credit: Toa55 via FreeDigitalPhotos.net