TIPS ON SUMMER RUNNING AND HYDRATION ESSENTIALS
Runners know that they need to stay hydrated especially in warm summer weather.
Dehydration in runners may lead to fatigue, headaches, decreased coordination, and muscle cramping. Other heat-related illnesses, such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke, have even more serious consequences. Runners need to pay attention to what and how much they’re drinking before, during and after exercise.
BEFORE YOU RUN
If you’re doing a long run or race (more than 15 to 20 kilometres), it’s important to make sure you’re well-hydrated during the few days leading up to your long run.
An hour before you start your run, try to drink about half a litre of water or other non-caffeinated fluid. To make sure you’re hydrated before you start running, you can drink another 100 to 200ml right before you start.
DRINKING DURING YOUR RUN
You should take in 100 to 150ml of fluid every 20 minutes during your runs for normal paced runners. Those running at a fast pace need to increase their consumption. Belts that hold small bottles of water tend to be more comfortable the having large bottles of water on your person.
It can be good to determine your sweat rate and how much fluids you might be loosing. Different people run at different paces and of course the weather will have an impact too so try your best to get a reasonably accurate measure. One measurement that is noted online quite a bit is to do the following: weigh yourself (naked) before a timed training run, and then again after.
About half a kilo of weight loss equals 500ml of water loss. Calculate your sweat rate and use this to determine your fluid needs during a run or race. For example, if you lose close to a kilo during an hour run, that’s close to 1 litre. Therefore, you need 250ml of water or sports beverage every 15 minutes.
AFTER YOU RUN
Don’t forget you still need to hydrate after a run. Follow the sweat rate measurement to rehydrate yourself.
Enjoy the run and stay hydrated.