This is the week of….heat and epic challenges!

Our club runs began back at the clubhouse this week, with the out and back route to Wing on Tuesday.  A bit drier than last time, but just as tough.  Captain Dan took out the Wednesday Fartlekkers for some sprints and Pigeon racing.  Coach Matt and the Improvers were putting in one mile reps round Astral Park Lake on Thursday.  And Jenny led the sunny social run on Friday.  Always a joy!

parkrun day saw LFRs at Rushmere, Bushy, Bedford, Crystal Palace, Lowestoft, Lymington Woodside, Eden Project, Houghton Hall, Workington, Osterley, Lowestoft, Watermeadows, Marston Vale and parkrun de Rouen....it's not a PB in French.  It's MP.  Meilleure Perf.  I like this.

At home in Rushmere, Andrew came in 8th (sneaking closer to his MP) with Jamie and Kevin sneaking into the top 20.  No MPs this week...the heat was too much!

Some LFRs took on a few epic challanges over the bank holiday weekend in the horrendous heat.....

Claire Giblin and Gordon Hill were at the Ridgeway Challenge - 86 miles of trails! Claire said this was the toughest race she has ever completed...26 hours on her feet.  "The Ridgeway was beautiful and the best part of it was getting to see the sun set and rise again. Magical."  Just wonderful.  Well done!

JK took on the White Cliffs Ultra - 32 Miles of heat and hills.  Great work, JK!

Paul Little was over in Canada for his ultra - the Black Spur Ultra.  54K.  Bears.  Coyotes.  6800 feet of rocky elevation.  And a personalised can of beer.  Awesome!

And the bank holiday ended in it's usual fashion with Karen leading a glorious social run around the Ashridge trails.  Lovely stuff!

We also had lots of LFRs out on their training runs and rides.  Superb efforts in this heat.  I decided against going out on my long run as it was far too hot for me!

Talking of heat.....

Tips for Running in the Heat

Dress appropriately - Make sure you are wearing lightly coloured and loose-fitting running gear. Pale colours reflect the sun’s rays better and baggy clothes help take advantage of any breeze, including the one you make yourself by running. Technical t-shirts can allow sweat to pass through them and evaporate, which keeps your core temperature lower. Sunglasses and waterproof sunscreen are a necessity, while a hat or visor to protect your face is also a good idea. Don’t go for a tight-fitting hat or one made from thick material though, as it is important to lose heat through your head.

Get your timing right - When training in the heat, you should avoid running between midday and 15:00 when the sun is at its strongest. Ideally you should run early in the morning. The air quality is also at its best in the morning. Sticking to routes that provide a lot of shade can make a difference too.

Keep hydrated - If you’re running for 45 minutes or less, drinking water alone is fine. But if you’re going for longer,  you should ideally consume around 235ml of sports drink every 20 minutes to help maintain electrolyte levels and refuel your muscles. Even if you don't feel thirsty, drink at least 225ml of fluid each hour. You should be hydrated ahead of your run too – drinking 450ml of water two hours before you start will ensure you’re well set. Work out the easiest way for you to carry bottles while you’re out and about, whether that be in a bag, a holster, or simply in your hand. Different people prefer different methods but there is always a way. Avoid drinks with caffeine and alcohol before runs as they increase urine output which can make you even more dehydrated.

Start slowly and know when to stop - When the sun is beating down, it’s particularly beneficial to start your run a bit slower than usual. If you normally run at eight-minute mile pace, try to run 10-minute miles – it will take you longer to overheat. If you feel you’re becoming too hot, know when to stop as heat-induced illness can be serious. Headaches, confusion, loss of muscular control, hot and cold flushes, over-sweating, clammy skin and an upset stomach are all signs of impending heat illness. If you feel any of these, seek shade, drink and try and get yourself a ride home.

Make use of water - It is usually cooler and breezier near water so running alongside it can help keep your core temperature down. Whether you run next to a river, stream, lake or even the canal, the lower temperature should make you feel a lot less tired.
(Source: VLM website)

Please be sensible in the heat.....if you're heading out without being properly fuelled and hydrated and not carrying any liquids, you are just asking for trouble.   Please don't do it.  Run safe.

That's all for this week.  Have a great week, LFR!

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