10 tips to start your summer training season

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10 tips to start your summer training season

By Klean Team sponsored athlete, Lori Russell, MSESS MS RDN LD CPT

Set goals, follow a plan and set yourself up for success during the sun & fun of summer with these 10 training tips.

1. Set Goals – The summer brings sun and fun but if you have fall racing plans or long-term fitness goals, this season needs to be taken seriously. Keep yourself motivated by setting small weekly or monthly goals. These small goals act as stepping stones that help you progress and feel accomplished throughout the season.

2. Follow a Plan – A goal is just a wish without a plan! To follow through with your summer commitments (and not get distracted with sun and fun), stick with a well-designed training plan. Whether you make your own or consult with a professional coach or service, a set training plan will help you stay focused and accountable to your future goals.

3. Adjust Metrics – A hot sun and sweaty skin is fun when you’re chilling on the beach, but it really takes a toll on your workouts. As the weather changes, allow yourself some grace with paces and distances. Perceived effort will be higher in hot, humid conditions and will be a more sustainable way to gauge progress as your body adjusts to the temperature conditions.

4. Optimize Hydration – As temperatures rise, so does your sweat rate. Replenish fluid losses by drinking 8 ounces of water before training and up to 16 ounces every 15 minutes during. Of course, sweat is more than water; it is made up of electrolytes that maintain fluid balance and nerve-muscle function. Go into your training session with less risk of cramping and dehydration by adding Klean Hydration electrolyte mix to your bottles to optimize your hydration strategy.

5. Mix It Up – As the weather turns, you’re bound to see more people outside doing all sorts of activities. Instead of slogging through the same training over and over, add some variety! Cross training won’t just boost fitness by working different muscle groups. There’s a chance it will significantly boost your level of enjoyment when it comes to adhering to your fitness goals. Try adding 1-2 sessions a week of a totally new activity such roller blading, rowing, hiking or even pickleball to boost your fun and fitness! 

6. Add Adventure – Pounding the pavement in the blazing sun can be draining and zap your focus and motivation. Instead, challenge yourself by taking your route off road with trail running, mountain biking, hiking, etc. Off-road routes require more focus to navigate tricky trails filled with roots and rocks.

7. Fuel the Effort – Increased rate of exertion is more than just a sensation; it requires additional metabolic activity meaning your body depletes carbohydrate (energy) stores at a higher rate than you were used to during colder months. Avoid a summer training bonk by increasing your calorie and carbohydrate intake before and during training sessions. Aim for 1 gram of carbohydrate per kilogram of body weight an hour before training and 30-90 grams every hour of training. 

8. Pack & Stash – You’ll start to see performances and recovery times diminish at a faster rate in the heat without proper hydration and fuel. ‘Not wanting to carry extra’ is the main reason athletes skip this crucial step, but don’t let that excuse hold you back. Preview your route ahead of time if possible and drop water bottles and gels at predetermined spots along the way.

9. Running a loop – especially one that passes a drinking fountain or your own house, will make fueling much easier to accomplish. 

10. Eat to Energize – Heat can make us athletes feel sluggish and slow. Overcome this with a diet that supports hydration and cooling with plenty of water rich fruits and vegetables. Crisp salads, fresh juices, gazpachos and smoothies are all meals that will keep you feeling energized in the heat while also supporting the high nutrition needs of athletes.

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