Cape Town offers some spectacular places to keep fit this summer. Whether you prefer a jog on the promenade or a trail run up the mountain, there is something for everybody. But and African summer is all but merciful! Here are 6 tips to get the most out of your running workout this season.
1. Run by feel, not targets
Cape Town summers are harsh and can drain and dehydrate you much faster. This is why it is crucial to listen your body and stop when it tells you to! Running in the this heat can be great for working on your stamina but be careful!
Start your workout slower than usual and if you feel good by the halfway mark, you can start seeding it up.
2. Choose your time wisely
Every time of day offers its own obstacles in summer. Early morning hours offer the lowest temperatures and a break from the strongest hours of sunlight. Late afternoons might also be cooler, but the humidity still lingers!
Needless to say, avoid running from 12-3.
3. Get off the roads!
Asphalt and concrete absorb heat and radiate it back to your already fatigued body. The summer months are a good time to try trail running as that offers more shade from trees to keep you out of the direct sun. Your pace on trails might also slow down so you won’t be going quite as fast.
4.Get a running partner
Heat can slow you down and make it harder to maintain the same effort you normally would like to. A partner offers some much needed encouragement when you don’t feel like pushing yourself or seem to have one to many excuse to get up early for a jog.
5.Gear matters in all conditions
Cotton absorbs moisture and becomes heavy. Light weight and coloured fabrics are best for staying cool and dry. There is also gear with UPF protection now which is an awesome added bonus. In the heat, less is best. Pick loose, light clothing, but apply sun-screen on any exposed skin.
Wear sunscreen of at least SPF 30 or higher, especially on exposed areas. There are companies that make sport-specific sunscreen that is lighter weight, and spray sunscreen is awesome too. Also wear a hat or visors to protect your face and head since this is generally your most exposed area. Stay hydrated if you plan to run for more than 30-45 mins.