As we enter the hot months of the year in Alabama, it’s important to keep logging your #100ALMILES while also taking precautions. The oppressive heat can not only be a big deterrent to logging miles, but it can also be dangerous if not done properly. Let’s take a look at four tips that will help motivate while also keeping you safe on the roads and trails.
Pick the Right Time of Day
We have 24 hours in a day, but not all of those hours are equally beneficial to getting in good miles during the 100 Alabama Miles Challenge. As a general rule, the hours in the dark tend to be the coolest, especially right at dawn. Plan ahead the day before you intend to log miles and check out the predawn temperatures. In addition to not having to battle the hear, getting in early miles is a great way to kickstart your day. You can’t bail on getting in your miles if it’s the first thing you do for the day!
Hydration is Key
Drinking lots of water may seem like a no-brainer, but so many people don’t give it the required attention until it’s too late. It’s best to start hydrating several hours before your run/walk/hike/ride. Waiting until you’re in the middle of your activity to drink water and electrolytes results in a deficit, and it’s very hard to catch up to the proper amount needed. A good rule of thumb is to consume about 1 liter of water per hour of activity.
Pick a Spot to Cool Off
Let’s be honest, we are all working hard to get our #100ALMILES during the hot summer months. Having something to motivate you to get finished is important. What better way to top off a great run or hike than a dip in a cool lake or pool? Not only is it refreshing, but it will get your heart rate and body temperature down at a quicker rate. Just make sure to scream “cannonball!” before you jump in!
Take a Friend
As the saying goes, “misery loves company.” Taking a friend along on your activity is a fantastic way to get in the miles. The time is guaranteed to pass by faster than if you are alone. A friend can also act as an accountability measure. It’s more difficult to bail on going out to get your miles if you have someone else planning to join you. So grab that perfect partner and hit the trails!
Greg Wingo is the manager of the 100 Alabama Miles Challenge Ambassador Program and owner of ROAM Projects, an outdoor recreation consulting company.