6 guidelines to follow if racing in unseasonably warm weather

What do you do when it becomes too hot to race? 

There are, of course, a few options for you, but choosing the right one in a short amount of time is hard to do and oftentimes quite stressful. When you’re lining up for your goal race, it’s hard to make logical decisions based on heat; you’ve done all the work and now it’s hot out?!  These were some of the choices that runners competing in the Savannah half and full marathons this weekend had to answer.

racing in warm weather
racing in warm weather

Potential options for your warm-weathered race:

  • Slow your pace
  • Move to a shorter race distance (some races will allow you to do this)
  • Skip the race/ defer to another year (if this is offered by a big race)

Are you training in fall temps but get to your race location and it’s hot out? Are you running in the race regardless of the temperature and humidity?  Use these precautions to avoid any dangers:

racing in hot weather
racing in hot weather
  • Seek shade prior to and during the race
  • Hydrate days in advance
  • Alter your race goals
  • Slow your pace down
  • Watch for signs of overheating or dehydration
  • Run based on effort and not by splits

Unfortunately, TrainwithMarc had a runner competing in the Savannah Half Marathon as her peak race.  The race is in Georgia and race directors schedule this race in November to avoid the warmer months of the Southern part of the US. Unfortunately, there was unseasonably warm weather with very high humidity – definitely not ideal racing weather.  As you might have imagined, it was not what we had expected when she signed up for a November half marathon.  While she’s done all the training she could have, we didn’t anticipate 84 degree weather with very high humidity.

We know that Becky’s effort (and her finishing time) don’t reflect the work she put in, but when racing in such warm and unseasonably humid conditions it’s best to save the all-out effort for a safer day.

For more stories about hot weather races and how to manage your race expectations, follow the links: 2015 Chicago’s hot marathon, Overcoming race day problems, Racing in the heat

If you’re interested in hiring Marc as your coach check out this link: Hiring a running coach

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Location Cherry Hill, NJ E-mail trainwithmarc@gmail.com Hours Weekdays: 3-10 pm; Weekends: 7 am-10 pm
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