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Monday, July 1, 2013

Be the Chick who Loves to Run in Heat

Something has got to give!  Starting a run in extreme heat is much more difficult than beginning early in the morning when it’s cooler, and gradually working myself into the heat.

The heat wave is still on in the western states.  There’s been deaths, fires, and immense tragedies (we lost 19 elite firemen yesterday in one forest fire).  We are fortunate locally.  Historically, we’ve got a few months before fire season.  And the heat deaths have been east of us, or in Nevada and other western states.  For us here in Southern California, it’s just damn HOT. 

If you are a reader, you are familiar with my dilemma.  I am a morning runner.  But my summer job assignment forces me to run afternoons.  And thus, I hit the trails this afternoon at approximately 1:40 PM.


About a mile in, I suffered immensely.  My body felt heavy, my eyes already stung from salt.  I wanted very badly to turn back.  Exasperated, I phoned my husband and asked, “How hot is it right now?” 

This is what he did:  he busted up laughing.

This is what I did:  I hung up on him.

When my husband, my coach called me back, he spoke to me in the way that he knows motivates me.  We have known each other for thirty-two years (gasp!), and he knows a little bit about me. Smile 

“Don’t be a baby who can’t run in the heat,” he said.  “You know what precautions to take.  YOU KNOW HOW TO DO THIS.  Be the chick who loves to run in the heat.”

Just minutes earlier I wanted to fall to the ground in a heap of tears.  Strange how his words, “be the chick . . . “ changed my motivation.  Suddenly, I wanted to learn to be the chick who loves to run in the heat. 

And so I ran. 

And I was MISERABLE.  But, I knew what precautions to take.  I kept hydrated.  I didn’t try to break any personal pace records.  I kept on the lookout for environmental hazards.  I enjoyed the summer beauty.


First thing I did when I reached Top of the World was unpack my bandana.  I drenched it and lay it on my neck.  Then I ran into the city park and guzzled down at the fountain (even though I had a pack on my back).  I washed down my face in the public bathroom, soaked my hat.  Then I drenched my bandana again and draped it over my head for the run back.

I don’t need no stinkin’ air-conditioning:IMG_6096Running Cyn Vistas to TOW and back 7-1-2013, Elevation 

I ran a little over 6.5 hilly miles this afternoon.  And I think that was quite enough.  I’m not yet the chick who loves to run in the heat.  But at least, I didn’t turn back.


  1. Heat and hills are your friend. Twin Peaks looms a few month away. You rock!!!

    1. I am soooo happy summer is over. Now I can start to train. ;)

  2. I am impressed! It has been so darned hot around here, I don't think I could run in the midday heat! I am running a 10K on the 4th and I know it's going to be miserable, but I'm ready, I will be the chick that runs (doesn't love it though) in the heat.

    1. It's pure torture Nicole. Thanks for reading. I hope you had a great 10k on the 14th!

  3. You are awesome Lauren! Just keep yourself well hydrated and this training will make you very strong. Our winter is very warm so far. I don't think it's a good thing. Nature is not well.

    1. So happy to welcome autumn. Hope your summer is mild!