Thursday, July 15, 2010

Heat Training

In preparation for next month's triathlon, which is sure to be even hotter than last week's, I decided that I really need to get acclimated to the heat during training.  Okay, to be honest, my work schedule made the final decision for me, since I work the 5 am - 10 am shift most days (and even though I love to run in the early morning, 3 am is too early for me).

I have never actually tried heat training before - when I taught preschool I had summers off, so I just got up earlier and earlier to run in the cooler morning temperatures.  At my new job - *gasp* - I discovered that normal people don't get three months of vacation time a year and have to run when the work schedule permits.  Who knew?

I dipped my toe in the (hot) water on Tuesday's brick workout - 14 mile bike, 2 mile run - by starting my workout a little after 8:30, which is a good two hours later than I prefer.  Temps were in the low to mid 70s with 15 - 20 mph winds blowing, so my bike speed suffered mightily (16.8 mph - ouch!), but the run went reasonably well (8:16 pace).  I felt like it was a pretty good start to my heat acclimation.

Today's run was more of a suffer-fest.  I didn't get on the road until almost 10 am and we were already hitting temps in the low 80s - ugh!  On the plan today was a 5 mile tempo run:  one mile warm-up (as if!), three miles at 8:16 pace, then one mile cool-down.  I kept it nice and easy for the warm-up (8:40), but pushed it a little too hard on the tempo part (7:59).  By the time I got to the cool-down, I was tapped out and took a LOT of walking breaks (11:15, 8:48 average pace overall).

Reading about heat training and expecting performance degradation is one thing, but experiencing it first-hand isn't what I'd call "fun."  I know it's good for me, though, and gives me another Ace in my running deck to pull out on rough days.

What's your best heat training tip?

8 comments:

Java Joggers said...

Wow... acclimating to the heat is tough. Hydration is the biggest thing for me. Good luck!

Middle Name Marie said...

YIKES! I cannot imagine heat training! Your pace run was great considering it was your first in the heat! Keep it up; you'll do great!

ajh said...

I have none. I had an awful run today. I didn't bring water.stupid stupid stupid. Your pace sounds good to me!

Teamarcia said...

I like to freeze my Accelerade so its nice and fresh for 2 minutes instead of one. And when I'm really dying, I put ice under my hat and let it drip. Ahhh!

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

Ugh...I have to do heat training too! My HIM is on Aug. 8th and it's going to be hot, hot, hot! My best tip would be just to make sure to hydrate well the day before and the day of!

Whitney said...

The heat kills me more mentally than physically. It is very smart of you to increase your training in more race-like conditions. That will be a big help for your race next month!

Johann said...

The only tip I have is to actually do it and drink plenty water and electrolyte drinks. Don't overdo it, but do it. You'll be glad when race day comes.

Becka said...

Blah... I loathe training in the heat. However, I do my long run on Sunday afternoons. During the summer that typically means it's upper 80s, low 90s. I don't know if that helps or not, but it sure makes me appreciate the days when I can actually go out in the morning!