Beat the Heat: 5 Tips for Runners

A Guide to Running During the Summer Months

Here in North Carolina, it’s quite common for our summers to be very hot and humid. This summer in particular, we have had a record number of days over 90-degrees. It’s no secret that I love warm weather (And by warm weather, I mean that triple-digit temperatures makes me happy!) but even I struggle with enjoying outdoor workouts during this time of year. If you’re new to running, it’s usually the first week of consistently warm days that is the hardest, and makes you question if you want to continue running at all. PLEASE DON’T GIVE UP! Ask around and you will quickly learn that the most seasoned runners struggle in this kind of heat too. It’s harder on our bodies to adjust to warm weather, but with the right approach, you can beat the summer heat. Here are five quick tips that are sure to help.

1. Hydrate — Make sure that you’re drinking plenty of fluids. The recommended 64 oz of water per day won’t cut it. You’re going to need more. You’ll want more than just water. And you’ll need to drink more often than the day of a run. For me, I have found that during the summer months, I drink around 100 oz of water per day. Additionally, I drink a minimum of 16-20 oz of Nuun the night before a run, as well as immediately after a run. It is important to drink an electrolyte – Sodium, Potassium, Magnesium, Calcium – replacement to replenish what is naturally lost when we sweat. I recommend Nuun because it has no sugar and no carbs. {Compared to Gatorade, which has over 20g(+) of sugar per serving!} Nuun is a gluten free, soy free, vegan, nonGMO, made in the USA tablet that you simply drop down into a bottle of water. The tablet immediately starts to dissolve, creating a fizzy, flavorful beverage. I love that Nuun is completely portable and can be adjusted to your liking. (I often break tablets in half and mix two flavors to customize my drink to the perfect taste.) If you’d like to learn more about Nuun, click here.

nuun1  nuun2

2. Clothing — I have known so many new runners who have rushed out to their local department store to buy running outfits. They’re excited to finally start running and want to look the part. I was guilty of it when I first started. How can you blame anyone? Have you seen some of the running clothes available? They’re so cute! But there’s a big mistake that many of us make: I didn’t like the way my legs looked in shorts, and I certainly wasn’t going to show off my jiggly arms! So, I bought clothes based on how much they covered and how well the outfit matched. What I ended up with was a dresser full of clothing that made me feel miserable during workouts. The material wasn’t moisture-wicking or cooling, and the capri pants were causing me to overheat. Did you know that when you run, you should dress for a 20-degree increase? That means, if it is 70 degrees outside… you should dress like it is 90! Although it was a struggle, I finally learned to put my self-consciousness aside and buy/wear clothing that is appropriate for summer workouts. Here’s a photo of a typical summer run outfit. It’s still cute, right?

clothes

I love the pop of color in my Nike shorts. Running shorts can be tricky. I highly suggest trying on several different styles to find the right fit for you. There are many different lengths and fits to choose from. In my three years of running with strangers, I can honestly tell you that I have never paid attention to anyone’s legs. Stop thinking that everyone will be paying attention to yours. They won’t. Do yourself a favor and buy shorts! They even make shorts with a skirt over them. I own two pair of those. Adorable, functional, and NOT form fitting. You have options!

The same goes for arms. I have never paid attention to, or even compared, others’ arms to mine. All it takes is wearing a tank top to one 90-degree run and you’ll fall in love. My favorite tank is this Brooks black and white geo print tank. The busy pattern camouflages and distracts, and is so much fun! This tank top is also quite long in length, which I love.

And friends, let’s not forget our feet! It is so very, very important to wear good socks to prevent blisters and provide support. I recommend Feetures! They’re a North Carolina-based, family-owned company that offers a lifetime warranty on their products. (Seriously… a lifetime warranty!) They’re the only sock that I wear in the summertime. I even recently wore them on vacation. I was the only person out of our group of six who did not get a single blister. Coincidence? Nope! That’s just how great Feetures! are. Click here to learn more about these great socks.

3. Sunscreen — It’s an easy oversight. When I first started running, I wanted to make sure that I had my earbuds, my cell phone, and my Garmin. Anything else was an afterthought. All it took was one 5K in early June to help me realize that there is more to summertime running than good music. I was sunburned! So now, before I even dress in my cute (yet weather-appropriate) outfit, I apply sunscreen. I personally use Banana Boat Sport 30SPF because it is water resistant… and I don’t sweat it off! I like to take the UltraMist in my bag for touch ups, especially since it also cools and refreshes.

sunscreen

4. Accessories — Sometimes, it’s the small things that can make all of the difference. Some of my favorite small items that help make summer running more bearable are:
A hat or visor
Sunglasses
Chapstick

accessories

And my all-time favorite accessory…. the Nathan Insulated Handheld water bottle. It slides right on my hand without the worry of having to grip it the entire run, and with one quick squeeze, I can have cold water at my fingertips. Literally. Nathan also makes waist paks, vests, and hydration belts, too. Check them out by clicking here.

nathan

5. Early Morning Workouts — Early birds will rejoice and night owls will cry, but the number one way to beat the summer heat is to get your run in as soon as the sun comes up. (Maybe even before, if you have a safe, well lit place to run.) Even on the hottest days, most morning temps are considerably cooler. For example, the highs for this week have been in the mid-90s but the morning lows have been around 68-degrees. Much better, right? You’ll have an easier run, and you’ll have your workout in before your day even gets started. Think of the extra time you’ll have in the afternoons, too!

If the thought of waking up early to get your run in is absolutely against everything you believe in… there’s always an indoor run on a treadmill. But where’s the fun in that? 😉

Are you new to running? Comment below if you’ve found these tips to be helpful. Are you a seasoned runner? We’d love for you to comment below with any additional tips that you may have to share. Happy Running!

 

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. I did not received compensation from, nor am I affiliated with any company listed. All products were purchased by me, including giveaways. Opinions expressed here are my own and were not influenced in any manner.

Making a List and Checking It 117 Times

As I work towards figuring out my new monthly budget I realize that more so now than ever it is very important to be “accountable” for where all my money goes each month. So I make a lot of lists and notes. I’ve always done this, I think it’s a genetic trait because my sister has notebooks full of lists and budgets. My friends make fun of me when I go on vacation, because I have a tendency to write down what I spend at the end of every day just to help me budget through the trip. Yes it sounds ridiculous, but it helps.

Anyways some advice I was given by my notebook writing sister on setting up a budget was to follow the 70/20/10 plan, which basically says 70% of your income goes to bills, 20% to savings that’s broken down into (10% for retirement, 5% emergencies, 5% specific goals) and the last 10% for debt.  I’m awful at percentages so check out this website it offers a more thorough explanation as well as great resources on how to save money in all types of categories.

I’ve always found it helpful to make a list of my monthly bills and list which pay period I pay them from. I also have a list of what is due annually/quarterly and the months I can expect those bills to show up. This helps me break down my monthly take home pay into what must go where and when I need to save up for things like car insurance which I pay quarterly. The rest I try to put in savings, and as wage increases have been available I have worked on increasing the amount that I put towards my retirement.

Lists can be useful in more areas than you think. I’ve realized by packing my kitchen contents for my move, that I just stock up on too much stuff. I’ve decided to really try and be diligent with sticking with a grocery list, and with not putting things on the list until I actually run out of what I have. Another tip that I’ve heard from others is to make a weekly menu and then shop only for what is on the menu. I know I am the world’s worst for buying fruits and vegetables with no specific purpose for them and then they go to waste. So hopefully sticking to the lists will help save me money and avoid the inexcusable amount of food that currently ends up in the compost bin.

Also for grocery budgets I found a great site that budgets the costs of meals served per serving. It lists all types of recipes and I really want to try to make a few of them, especially the bread. I’m excited about baking in my new kitchen, its nice to know that I could make tortillas for .04 cents a serving.

Seeing meals broken down by ingredients costs makes me think wow, I can make a lot of the things I currently buy a lot cheaper! Eating at home more is definitely one of ways I can save money as well as packing leftovers for lunch instead of the current frozen meals that I buy. I guess those suggestions are rather obvious but we have become such a society of convenience lovers that we are willing to spend so much more on pre-made, prepackaged unhealthy stuff. If we prepared more food from scratch or even semi-homemade we would not only see the money saving benefits but the health benefits as well. I have been fortunate to be able to supply the majority of my vegetable needs the last few summers, I really enjoy the process and who doesn’t love a good home grown tomato. Gardening has initial costs each year, but overall it saves a lot of money throughout the season, and if your fortunate enough to be able to preserve some of your harvest you can enjoy those savings all year round.

Spotlight: Tweetheart TV

To paraphrase Wikipedia; creativity is the phenomenon where a person brings about something new, and that new thing holds a significant value.

My friend, Stephanie Wonderlin, has done just that!


On January 4, 2011, Stephanie Wonderlin, creator and host, unveiled cutting-edge creativity when she launched the first interactive social media show on her channel, Tweetheart TV. What once provided social media information in the form of exceptional, well-edited videos, Tweetheart TV has broken the creative barrier to now offer its viewers the choice of which segment they would like to watch! At the end of each segment, the viewer can choose to return to the main menu to choose another available segment. Episodes of Tweetheart TV promise to be packed with social media tools, interesting sites and gear, social media tips and tricks, and a little bit about the host, herself. Since this unique style of show is brand new to the industry, it can currently only be viewed on a computer and not on a mobile device. I feel certain it is only a matter of time before the creatives at Tweetheart TV resolve this minor exception.

Take a moment to enjoy this NEW interactive show below. If you enjoy it, please share my blog with others… and don’t forget to subscribe to Tweetheart TV!

Stephanie is a significant voice in the social media world. She is a great mentor with a wealth of knowledge and fabulous personality. If you aren’t already, consider following Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.  Stephanie also works as Director of Social Media for Digital Street, and was chosen as one of only twenty women bloggers to participate in the Nike Make Yourself Movement.