The heat of summer is coming to a close; hay’s in the barn! You’ve worked hard, put in the time despite humidity and hot, sticky mornings, BUT you did it and now, all that effort is about to pay off.
First, let's take a look at why running in the fall is AWESOME!
1. Beautiful Scenery: The leaves are changing – brilliant shades of orange, red, and yellow!! The surroundings transform overnight; a scenic journey with each run awaits! We are reminded of that satisfying feeling as the leaves crunch beneath your feet!
2. Perfect Temperatures: It’s not too hot, not too cold, it’s just right, Goldilocks! You will experience less discomfort in those long miles; less dehydration; and who doesn't love to wear a cute long sleeves on those cool mornings!?
3. Costumed Races: Disney, Marvel, Patriotic Themed, etc., how fun is a race that you get to dress up, let loose, and just have fun!?
4. Seasonal Treats: Pumpkin Spice anyone? Post workout fuel is better with apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin spice!
Now to get a little more serious. Below are some
tips for fall running as the season approaches!
Don't over-layer: My cardinal rule, if you go outside on a cool day and you are comfortable, you're wearing too many layers. Do not be fooled by a light chilly breeze in the morning. You will warm up and that breeze may feel obsolete within minutes. If you have too many layers bogging you down, the run is going to get uncomfortable quickly! Who likes running with a jacket around their waist and carrying hat/gloves...nobody! When it comes to long sleeves, go with light-weight, breathable tech-gear.
Run longer and faster: Your runs will feel a bit more effortless as the temperatures cool and humidity goes away. Why? Because running in humidity forces your heart to work harder to keep you cool. Now that the outside temp is lower you will not heat-up quite as quickly. Take advantage of this by increasing your distance a bit and revving-up your speed. However, do not add more than 10% to your total miles per week!
Protect your Skin: Even though temps are lower, the sun rays will still burn you! Make sure to still use sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.
Update your Shoes: Keep track of when it is time for a new pair of kicks. You don't want to go into fall racing with shoes you have worn all summer because this increases chance of injury. As shoes get worn down, you will experience a heavier impact with each step. On the contrary, don’t race in brand new shoes, slowly break them in 1-2 weeks before. Get fitted at a store such as River Valley Running or TC Running (for those of you in MN) where they do a gait analysis, watch you run, look at the wear pattern of your old shoes, and find a shoe to fit YOUR mechanics!
Stay Visible in the Dark: Daylight savings ends November 6th, so you may have to adjust your run to the lighting OR plan to have a light with you and wear reflective clothing. Keep in mind the rules of the road and remember, when you're out there - be on high alert; Most drivers are not looking out for you - turn down the headphones and listen to your surroundings.
HAVE FUN!: Fall running is arguably the best season to run. Enjoy it and hit that last PR before the snow comes!
Here in MN, I am so grateful we get a taste of every season. It really is wonderful to watch the leaves change, not worry about humidity on those cool mornings, become one with nature, and of course; carve pumpkins and dress up for races!