Running, Racing and Sweating My Face Off

Big Ang Summer

It’s summer. And I know. This past winter was OFF THE CHAIN cold. I remember being in the throes of it, wishing for a sip of sunshine. That’s just it. I wanted the sunshine in sips. Small doses. I didn’t want to shotgun the sunshine. Or funnel it circa 1994 Spring Weekend Party at Brick House. I wanted to sip it. Casually. In moderation. You know, ease into summer. Like all runners should. Wouldn’t that have been nice?

What happened instead was a sufferfest that lasted all damn week, turned my runs into slop, and made me nauseous. Damn. Just when I felt I was really rolling. A Running Meltdown.  I know. I’ll suck it up. I’ve got no choice. But man, that initial heat wave was BRUTAL.  It just sucks every damn ounce of life out of me. I am horrible at running in temperatures over 80 degrees. At least initially. I totally suck at it. Camel, I am not. I am hoping and praying that with a little acclimation, I turn into Helios, and laugh right in the sun’s bright, hot, fat face. Until then, I’m running alongside the Stuggle Bus. Here’s how the week went:

Monday: 5+ mile run at lunch.The elusive run at lunch, or “runch” as all the cool kids say.  Not incredibly hot, just incredibly wet. I got caught in a down pour. And in a stupid stealth move, this happened:

Yup. I found a discarded plastic “baggie” in a super seedy section of town by my work, turned that bitch inside out, ignored suspicious residue and saved my phone. And I’d totally do it again.

Tuesday: 7 miles +. Intervals. Treadmill.  12 X 400m, 400m recovery. Plus warm up. Plus cool down. Plus exhaustion. But, I did them. Then almost blew it by eating gelato for breakfast.

Gelato. Oh how I love thee...

Gelato. Oh how I love thee…

Wednesday: REST. I took my rest day seriously. Drunk Otis and I went for a walk. It was OPPRESSIVE.

Where's Drunk Otis?

Where’s Drunk Otis?

Thursday: 5 miles. Was supposed to be 6 miles. Bad Colby. Got nauseous and light headed. Cursed the heavens. Did manage to run at my prescribed pace, but nearly melted in the process. Ended run in a damn heap.

Note: I should have known I was going to spontaneously combust on Thursday. Especially since I started the day all fired up with the #TimHunt “girl-scientists-are-blubbering-temptresses-and-should-work-in-segregated-labs” bullshit.  

Stop. Just stop.

Friday: 5 miles. Was supposed to be 6 miles. Bad Colby. Again. Packed black t-shirt, black shorts, black hat. Died 1,000 deaths. Did not get nauseous. Progress. Did however consume shaker of salt the moment I staggered in the door. Checked weather app before run and this is what I got. (P.S. The actual temp was 86. Liar.)Hot

Saturday: 6.2 mile trail race. This was the second race in that Trail 2 Trail Series I ran a month ago. Such a great race series. If you’re in the Northeast- check ’em out. I ran. I sweated. I got lost. I had a goddamn blast. I love trail races! Although I am quite certain I left with malaria. And a tick borne disease. In a very happy twist, I managed to come in 2nd in my age group and consumed a small watermelon at the finish. YES!

In a heap.

In a heap.

Sunday: 20 mile bike ride at break neck speed. I rode with My Other Half. Which means, I rode a Stage of the Tour. You pretty much know you are screwed when you look at your bike computer and think to yourself: Huh. Check me out! I’m riding well! 25mph. Lookit me go!  Then you glance back up and realize you got dropped LIKE YOU WERE STANDING STILL by your Beloved. He turned the screws on my tired ass. And dropped me like a hot, sweaty potato.  Agony.

But beautiful.

But beautiful.

Total miles run:  Just shy of 30.

Total miles biked: 20. They were a blur.

Gallons of sweat lost: 6.

How long does it take you to get accustomed to running in the heat? Hot weather runner or cold weather runner? How do you hydrate during long runs: hydration vest, hand held or plant water bottles?

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61 thoughts on “Running, Racing and Sweating My Face Off

  1. It takes me a super long time to get used to running in the heat. I don’t mind heat as much as humidity though. I hate feeling like I’m running through a cloud because the air is so thick. Glad to see you still got a solid week of training in ! I usually run with handheld water bottles. But I’ve run with a fuel belt before. It just never hits my waist properly and always bounces around. Grr.

    • I have the same issues with fuel belts. Occasionally I’ll get it right. Heat + Humidity simply kills me. And for some reason this is the year I got allergies. Puffy eyes. Wheezy. Stuffed. Mess. How does that happen?

  2. I ate enough pretzels and cheeseballs and drank enough water and other liquids this weekend to fulfill any electrolyte needs for all of us. I remember going to the bathroom in one place 3 times. I’m just that good. Also, lots of bush peeing. #proudofit

  3. I’m a hot weather cyclist. The hotter, the better. Takes me a week to acclimate, maybe a week-and-a-half max. I love the heat only because everyone else suffers more than I do. I can absolutely turn them into piles of sweating mush, while I sit there smiling, sippin’ on a Gatorade. Two years ago we did an 80 miler, bunch of friends and I. It was 114 at 2 feet off the pavement or so (96 actual). I was up front for the last 20 miles. Absolutely dug it.

  4. It’s taken me longer than I would like. I start my next training cycle next month so I hope to have it down by then. I use a handheld for short runs and a fuel belt for anything over 5. It never seems to be enough though when it’s crazy humid.

  5. My week exactly! Hot and humid every single run. When it’s 88% humidity and 79 deg at 5-freakin’-AM, day after day after day, I just want to slit my wrists. Seriously. It takes me weeks to acclimate to summer. Heat I can manage, humidity not so much. I slow down, walk when I need to, and stop at every single water fountain I can find. And I carry water. And I try to remind myself that I go through this every year, and that I’m not suddenly a pathetic loser at running. And I feel really, really sorry for myself.

    • We are living parallel lives. WE ARE. I feel so defeated. And ticked off! It’s just not fun. It usually takes me a solid two weeks of this hot, humid, nonsense to get my thermoregulation in some sort of order. Until then, I’m sweating and pitying my face off. 😦

  6. I live in south Florida where summer marathon training days can reach 100 degrees with a “feels like 107” because of humidity. It’s awful! My run team and I use CamelBak Darts. They are the best for running and training in this weather. You barely notice them and it holds what feels to be the bare minimum water for that kind of mileage and that kind of heat. Hang in there!

    • *bows down*
      So impressed. We have that wicked humidity here too. That’s the real issue. But you have some serious other world shit going on down there. I am totally impressed. 🙂

  7. Oh, Dolly, I feel your pain. I don’t think I ever get “used” to running in the heat – I just keep slogging through until that first crisp autumn day. I am a terrible hot weather runner. But I sure do love me some cold weather running!
    And as to your last question – I plead the fifth. I don’t want to get hit over the head with a gatorade bottle. I DO usually carry water on long runs in hot weather, but I hate carrying the damn bottle.

    • I will pour Skratch Labs down your gullet, LADY. Hydrate. For the love of electrolytes HYDRATE.

      P.S. We’d better hope for a cold snap in two weeks. Or I am doomed for our Half Marathon.

  8. I am having troubles adjusting to the heat as well, I love it, I just haven’t adjusted well yet. I usually run with whatever water bottle I pick up. I do have a hydration vest now for trail runs but I haven’t decided if I want to try it for my long runs. My first one at 95+ may decide that for me! That’s still a great week of running!

    • Thanks Fallon! I felt like such a slug. It usually takes me a few weeks to get my act together. I think every year I forget how much it stinks. Or maybe I just block it out. 😉 I love that vest for trail runs. It works like a charm!

  9. I’m relegated to pool running due to my injured foot, and boring as it is, it’s a nice break from running in the arizona summer. Humid, no. But Lordy is it hot– headed for 108!? This week!

  10. I basically melt in the heat. I have to hold water and about half of it usually gets dumped on my face. Fair weather runner over here. I blame San Francisco.

  11. I hear you! I moved to Alaska to escape the heat, and it was 88 degrees today. It is so hot here and I can’t stand it! It makes running so much more difficult. I hope we both adjust soon and/or it cools off a bit!

  12. Great workout summary there! Sometimes I think I run more in the winter than I do in the summer. I absolutely do not like to run in hot weather. The sun beating down on me makes me tired before I start. So in the summer, I have to get up really early or wait until almost sunset to go running. It can be hard.
    But it’s all worth it in the end, right? I always have a smile on my face at the end of a run.

    • TRUTH! It’s always worth it!!! The tough stuff always is. 🙂 I am changing how I operate as well. Early mornings for me! It’s been a slight adjustment, but I have to say, I’m loving it.

  13. Oof, I do NOT do well with heat, running or otherwise. It takes me a really long time to get acclimated, which is why I generally do am runs or treadmill runs in the summer. But since I’m a lazy ass, am runs don’t usually happen as often as they should.

  14. Gelato for breakfast. lol Should of done it.

    The heat is fun until you run in it. It was a balmy 110 here yesterday and I even put in 2 miles. I think summer has arrived!

  15. Not a huge fan of the hot weather, but I’ll take it over winter ANY day! When our family visits the North Carolina shore, I usually get up in the dark and run (around 5.30 a.m.), because it’s way too hot and humid for me to run during sunlit hours. and I will get heat stroke (no kidding). Up in New York state it’s usually not so bad as that. I just try to stay hydrated. I’m looking into getting a handheld water bottle as we speak!

    • I’m in the market for a new hand held bottle myself! Let me know what you wind up with!! That’s what I think is going to happen with me. I need to get up and OUT AEAP. As Early As Possible! 🙂

  16. I am for sure a cold weather runner! I’d rather bundle up in layers than fight to retain consciousness while my head turns red and threatens to fall off. (Ideally it would always be 50 degrees and mostly cloudy when I run.) I have a hand-held bottle that I grudgingly take with me… I want to love it – allegedly insulated, zipper pouch that holds my phone – but if I put more than half its possible volume in it leaks, and it keeps water cold for approximately 15 seconds. But it’s better than nothing, at least until I find the Great White Buffalo of hydration tactics!

    • COLD WEATHER RUNNERS OF THE WORLD UNITE! I am beyond pleased with my Nathan Hydration Vest. That thing is awesome. And it fits me. (I’m only 3 apples tall.) I’ve been looking for a decent non-leaking handheld. You have one job, dammit! If I find it, I’ll let you know!

  17. our temps have been way too humid so early in the morning, and then we get this torrential downpour in the early evening, which drops the humidity. I might need to switch from an am to pm runner…

  18. Congrats on the race! And best of luck with your Lyme Disease and West Nile Virus. I’m with you on the weather – when it’s not in the 90’s here, it’s 97% humidity – no joke! Definitely messing with my runs and my head. My poor pretty head. I carry a hand held hydration device – which is to say it’s a plastic bottle in a strap that my hand goes through. So high tech!

    • Between you and Helly. I have no idea how you do it. Our humidity sucks in the dead of summer. It’s oppressive as well. And of course wouldn’t you know that today is a rest day?? AND IT’S FREAKING GORGEOUS OUT. Grrrrrrr.

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