early mornings are key to beating the heat
Beating the heat can be difficult, however managable as our IMP runners are based all over the country.
In places like the Cape and the NT – early starts are a must – however in very remote places – lighting on footpaths / roads is not that great early in the dark of the morning. There is a window of time in the earl AM that you can train in between there being enough light to go for a run, and the actual sun rising (i.e. when it gets too hot!) of around 30 – 40 mins and this is the best time to get some km’s in. This isn’t much time especially when you’re training for a marathon so an approach is to combine running now, with running later in the day. At the other end of the day there is another window of time between the sun setting, and there being enough light to train and you can go for a second run at this point. Either that or a pool running session can combine as a second session for the day.
Heat can really knock you for 6 so be sure to keep the fluids up all day – and you dont need to push as hard in the heat as you would in the cooler climates. There are physialogical benefits to training in the heat (i.e. increased blood volume) that come as a result of simply running in the warmth so stay focused and consistency is key!
I lived in many Remote Indigenous Communities when I worked as a teacher and ran every day while I was there. I used to start running at 4:30AM in the morning to beat the heat. Wearing a headtorch so I could see really helped me. I used to buy my headtorches at from the “Australian Geographic” shop at Casuarina Shopping Centre in Darwin (I’m not sure if it’s still open, I hope it is). I always used to buy a spare one as well so that if the first one broke when I was out in a Community then I always had a spare, and I always used to buy a stack of spare long life batteries to take with me to Communities as well. To get up early I had to make sure I went to sleep early. This can be hard if it is still light when you go to bed the night before, so I always used a “Sleep Mask” (one of those things people put over their eyes so they can sleep on aeroplanes) to block out the light so I could go to bed early and still get to sleep. The best “Sleep Masks” I think are the ones with velcro on them. When you run with a headtorch you just have to be a little bit careful because they don’t show how deep potholes are, and corrugations can be hard to see (headtorches don’t show up “depth” in holes very well so it’s easier to twist your ankle), but if you run the same course a lot you get to know the depth of the potholes and corrugations on your course prettty well because you see them every day.
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