Last weekend in New York City there was the marathon. I forget who won, I honestly wasn’t even paying attention. I’d have completely forgot there even was a marathon if it weren’t for my twitter timeline and the fact that certain streets were blocked off.
Usually in the weeks leading up to the marathon, I often get asked if I’m training for it. Because people know I like to run and typically I have certain benchmarks I’m looking to reach. The answer is, no, I’m not training for the marathon. I don’t know that I ever will. For the most part I’ve been running 6 or more miles a day for almost 3 years and there are a few things that seem to strike folks when I speak of my experience doing this.
1) I’ve done it all solo. I’ve never done a serious run with anyone else. Well, scratch that. I ran one time last summer in Clove Lakes park in Staten Island with a former member of the Marine Corps Special Forces unit. He asked me to. It was a good run but definitely slower and shorter than I’d have liked. Dude was in amazing shape, about to become a full time trainer, so I was a little disappointed. I also ran with Alex from the Kickdrums in Central Park one time. And that was fun. For the most part though, every day I’m on my own.
2) I’ve never been in a race. I’ve never even thought about being in a race. I know there are all these 5k runs for this and that. And maybe I should get involved with one of those some day. I don’t know, they just never really appealed to me for whatever reason.
3) Up until very recently, when I bought an iPod Nano, I ran in total silence. For a very brief period of time I was using the media player on my blackberry, but then the headphone jack stopped working. So no music really. Just me. Alone. With my thoughts and the ground beneath my feet.
4) I ran with the same pair of Asics from January 2008 up until October 2010. That’s a lot of miles to cover with one pair of sneakers. They’re still in surprisingly good shape with lots of tread on them. You’d think all the running outside would wear them out, but that just hasn’t happened. Why didn’t I buy a new pair? Laziness, mostly.
5) I haven’t had a single noteworthy injury. Barely a knee pain worth mentioning from running itself.
Why am I telling you this? Well, it’s because I think when I hear these questions about whether or not I’m training for a marathon or a race, I start thinking about people’s purpose for doing things. Maybe they don’t think they’ll win the marathon, but they want to complete it anyway. It’s on their bucket list or whatever. Some people do it for charity. Other people do it because it’s a social thing. Like, a year ago a friend asked me to get in a marathon runner’s club with her. Adidas was sponsoring it and they were filming the training sessions and all this other shit. It sounded cool to me, but oh such a pain in the ass.
How bout I just get down to telling you why I run… I run because I enjoy it. I run because now it feels like a natural thing. I enjoy the process. I enjoy moving my legs. I enjoy feeling my heart beat fast. I enjoy hitting my stride. I enjoy breathing heavy. I enjoy keeling over on the treadmill because I think I can’t go any longer. I enjoy sprinting at 12mph and feeling the burn in my quads. I enjoy running up a hill and feeling every muscle in my core tighten as I try to maintain my speed and make it to the top. I enjoy the time I get to be alone with my thoughts. I enjoy runner’s high. I enjoy feeling alive.
There’s this idea- I think maybe it’s an American thing- where we always have to be doing something for a specific reason. Like there has to be some deep subversive meaning behind our actions. Something bigger than what it is. Like running. And a marathon. I just don’t subscribe to that theory at all. I do things because I let them naturally occur. I take piano lessons because I want to be come better at playing the piano, because in the natural order of things, my hands are drawn to the keyboard, but not because I want to be a pianist. Not because I want to perform a concerto. No, because it brings me a sense of joy. And again, it’s the process itself that provides the reward.
It’s similar to running. I needn’t be running in pursuit of completing a marathon to make me run. I’ll run my 6 7 or 8 miles a day whether the concept of marathon exists or not. There is no grand scheme here. I top out at 8 miles or so just on the strength of being kind of bored after an hour. Nothing more to it. I’m sure if I wanted to, I could run 28 miles straight. I’ve actually not a doubt in my mind about that. Last night I ran a 6 minute mile. First time in my life I did that. It was the 3rd mile of my workout. I had no real goal in mind, just an impulse. It wasn’t something I set out to do per se. But in the midst of mile 2 I said to myself, maybe I can knock out a mile in 6 minutes. And I did. Then I got off the treadmill.
I felt like Edward Norton in The Incredible Hulk all day today. Why? Because I was wearing this new Omron HR-100C heart rate monitor that I ordered off Amazon. The monitor is basically two pieces– a band that wraps around your chest area and a watch that displays what your current heart rate is.
I’ve wanted to order one of these for over a year, just never got around to doing it. But I’ve recently grown tired of staring at the heart rate monitors that exist on treadmills and elliptical machines. I don’t know how they work, but they certainly don’t seem accurate. They always look like they’re giving me the same readout. So I splurged, spent the 32 bucks on the item, and waited for it to arrive.
It came in the mail today. I actually was pretty excited to try it out. I didn’t think I’d find it as amusing as I did. Basically, the strap that goes around your chest isn’t uncomfortable at all. When you think about it, you expect it to be annoying, wearing this clunky device under your shirt. But it’s hardly even noticeable.
Then you find yourself just looking at the watch all the time. I must have checked my heart rate every 30 seconds, just to see if it jumped at all. And it did! The way this thing keeps updating itself is crazy, because you can actually see how just walking up out of your chair makes your heart rate jump. Heading to the fridge for a snack? Well watch your heart rate increase as you walk. Watching something exciting on TV? The heart rate jumps. Lying down? Heart rate decreases.
One of the things I like about it is that you can enter a training zone into the devices memory. Basically, you’ve got your resting heart rate, your fat burn heart rate, your cardio heart rate, your intense training heart rate, and your maximum heart rate. They’re all based on the formula 220 minus your age, times 50%, 65%, 80%, 95%, 100%, for each training zone, respectively. You pick where you want to train, and set a low heart rate, and a high heart rate, and then set the watch to alarm you if you fall below your minimum heart rate, or exceed your maximum. I worked out with it tonight, I set mine between 65% and 80%. It worked real well. I actually ended up exceeding my maximum heart rate once or twice.
I think I’m going to wind up using the watch just for every day timekeeping. It’s got a stopwatch, but otherwise it’s pretty simple. I just haven’t had a watch in over ten years. I think I’m due for one. And hey, I may just find myself wearing the band around my chest just for the hell of it. Watching my heart rate is pretty fun so far.
Next up, a pedometer!
Anyone who’s been on a diet knows that there are just certain food items that you cannot stop eating, no matter how unhealthy it is, or how hard you try to fight your cravings.
For me, that food item is sweetened cereal. Honey Bunches of Oats, Honey Nut Cheerios, Vanilla Almond Special K, Life with Cinnamon, the list goes on and on.
I’ve always been a late night junk food junkie. I started my habit of staying up well past the midnight hour back during the 1992 Summer Olympics, in Barcelona. My brother and I used to stay up until something like 2am every night during the Olympics so we could watch boxing. We’d eventually watch Oscar De La Hoya win the gold medal. At the time, my parents had just separated, and my dad didn’t always buy the healthiest of snacks. It wasn’t uncommon to sit up eating Twizzlers and buttery popcorn all night with my older bro.
That probably lead to me being sort of a chunky fella during my teenage years. I was never terribly fat (not until college), but was most certainly overweight for my age, and had a little pot belly. Throughout high school I tried to get to bed before midnight on most nights, but when my brother stayed local for a semester of college in ’99, he brought his late night frat house lifestyle with him, and wreaked havoc on my sleep. Till this day, I’ve never recovered from that. No matter what job I’ve had, what’s going on in my life, school, whatever, I’ve never been able to get to bed before 2am consistently.
Along with the poor sleeping habits, I eat late. It’s not uncommon for me to eat an entire box of cereal right before I go to bed. I will feel this craving just come over me, and I’ll go to the store, buy a box of whatever sweetened cereal they have on the shelf that isn’t like complete and total sugar, and I will just down the whole box in one sitting.
Now you’re probably thinking that’s insane. And you know what, it is. I’m writing this in the late afternoon/early evening, and the idea for the post actually came to me because I just ate about half a box of Honey Nut Shredded Wheat. But I’m pretty full. I don’t even think I’m going to eat dinner tonight, that’s how full I am. Still, I’m going to hit the gym shortly, and burn off a lot of the carbs that I just downed.
My understanding is that your metabolism slows at night, that whatever you eat will quickly turn to fat. I believe it. I think if I was able to knock off this guilty pleasure, I’d drop another 10-15 pounds easily.
Like everyone else, I’m working my way through it.
Just tastes so damn good!
For some people it’s pizza, or ice cream…. I wanna know, what’s your guilty pleasure?
Tara Parker-Pope has an interesting piece up over at the New York Times Well blog about training for the New York City Marathon with the run-walk method. What is the run-walk method? It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Basically what you do is take your regular timed or distance run, and instead of trying to run the entire length of the workout, you take short walk breaks in between. To be honest, reading this Times article actually gave me some good insight into the way the walk-run method is seen by other runners. Parker-Pope writes,
“I’m using the “run-walk” method, popularized by the distance coach Jeff Galloway, a member of the 1972 Olympic team. When I mentioned this to a colleague who runs, she snickered — a common reaction among purists.”
Now I don’t have too much experience running with other quote unquote “runners,” but I could see how a purist might feel the run-walk method is baloney. Just the idea of running for a minute, then walking for a minute, then running a minute, then walking a minute, and so on, for something like three hours, sounds pretty ridiculous. But it’s not. It’s actually very effective.
One thing I try to tell people who aren’t in the greatest of shape, and are looking to start running as a means to getting fit, is that if you have to know how to run before you can enjoy the act of doing it. It may not be marathon training, maybe it’s just 30 minutes a day to go along with your diet. But you need to know how to run, or else you’ll feel like total crap, get worn down, and incur injuries and just feel fatigued from your exercise. There’s a big difference between running and running yourself ragged.
As a former fat boy, I’m not an advocate of straight running. I can’t even tell you the last time I did a straight run, where I did 6 or 7 miles in a row (granted, not marathon-type training, I admit). At best, you’ll find me running 15 minutes uphill, then breaking for about five minutes of walking, and then another 10 minutes of running, and then a quick 5 minute walk break again. This keeps me fresh and my energy levels steady, my legs don’t get nearly as weary as when I try to do the run straight through. That said, could I do it straight? Yes, I could. And the fact that I still don’t do it says a lot.
Let me give you an example. A few months ago I went to the gym. Normal day there, except I’d gone to bed around 5am the night before, and my legs felt particularly tired. I notice that going to bed after 2am always leaves me in that sort of sluggish zone. But anyway, I get on the treadmill and I just felt that running on an incline on that particular day wasn’t going to be the best idea. So I opted for a flat run, which I think is kind of useless for fat burn, but I’m beyond that point, so it was a moot point. Up until then, on a varying incline between 5-8, I was running a mile at about 7:30. That I was running at 7:30, coming from something like 11 or 12 minutes just a year ago, is saying a lot. But that 7:30 was on an incline. I figured I could beat it on flat surface. But how many miles could I do?
So I started out at a pace of 8.6 mph, which is roughly a 6:58 mile on the treadmill. If the 6 minute mile is the holy grail, for a guy who’s technically not a runner, getting even in the 6 minute range was kind of a thrill. I walked about a quarter of a mile to warm up a bit, and then I knocked out one mile. Then I stopped and walked for a minute to a minute and a half (I wasn’t keeping track really, I just made sure I started the next mile on a whole minute). I continued, ran another mile. Then I walked again. Ran another mile, walked.
Before I knew it, I was keeping up this 6:58 pace, not even remotely tired, and I was about 45 minutes into the run, roughly 5 miles into the run already. I topped out at a little over 7 miles for the hour. The New York City Marathon is 26.219 miles. According to MarathonGuide.com, the average time it took people to finish the New York City marathon was 4 hours and 25 minutes. Now obviously that average is skewed by the people who finish it in much longer times. But just saying, if you can build up your endurance to the point where you can just stay moving on your feet, period, for three hours, the walk-run method should get you through the marathon at a decent pace.
When it comes to exercising on treadmills, I generally find that people don’t know what they’re doing. You think every time you’re on the treadmill you need to be jogging 4 miles straight for a half hour. That couldn’t be any more counterproductive to what you’re trying to accomplish, which is to burn fat, lose weight, and build lean muscle mass.
To do that you don’t need to be running at a 9-10 mph pace for a half hour on a flat incline. Remember, you’re overweight as is, how are you going to run at that speed for 30 minutes without killing yourself? What’s going to happen is, if you’re lucky you’ll be able to run a mile, maybe a mile and a half. Then you’re going to get tired, but your “Rocky” mode will click on, and you won’t want to give up, so you’ll sweat it out. Tomorrow you’ll be able to do the same thing. After a day or two though, you will subconsciously dread getting on the treadmill. Why? Because you’re killing yourself.
What you need is a 30 minute treadmill program that keeps your heart rate in a decent range for fat burn, typically around 65%. To get that rate, subtract your age from 220, now multiply it by .65
Mine is 125.45. What’s yours? Use the heart rate calculator if you’re having trouble.
That means I basically need to keep my heart rate above 125.45 to keep burning fat. Fat burn takes place during lower intensity exercises that occur over longer periods of time. So that guy you see in the gym who’s been barely moving on the elliptical for an hour, while you’ve been damn near hyperventilating trying to run an 8 minute mile on the treadmill, he’s burning more fat than you. It’s like the old tortoise and the hair story, slow and steady wins the race.
Truth is, there’s a lot more to heart rate and fat burning zones, cardio zones, etc. I’ll get into all that in a later post. Odds are if you’re out of shape, just getting your heart rate over 100 should do the trick. Usually the machines in the gym have heart rate monitors on them. They’re not always accurate so you may want to get a heart rate monitor. At the very least you can feel like Edward Nortion in the Incredible Hulk.
So now that you’ve got being a marathon runner out of your mind (at least until we get you in better shape), you’re going to want to try this 30 minute low intensity workout. Combined with a diet, this workout is guaranteed to yield results if you do it 4 days a week minimum. It’s so easy that you have no excuse not to do it. I advise you to print this out and take it to the gym with you. It’s a little bit of a pain adjusting the treadmill every minute, but it’s just a minor inconvenience for a new body. If you have a treadmill at home you can most likely program it right in.
minute 1- speed 2.0, incline 0
minute 2- speed 2.0, incline 0
minute 3- speed 2.5, incline 0
minute 4- speed 2.5, incline 0
minute 5- speed 3.0, incline 3
minute 6- speed 3.0, incline 4
minute 7- speed 3.0, incline 5
minute 8- speed 3.0, incline 3
minute 9- speed 3.0, incline 4
minute 10- speed 3.0, incline 3
minute 11- speed 3.5, incline 5
minute 12- speed 3.5, incline 6
minute 13- speed 3.5, incline 4
minute 14- speed 3.5, incline 7
minute 15- speed 3.5, incline 8
minute 16- speed 3.0, incline 7
minute 17- speed 3.0, incline 8
minute 18- speed 3.0, incline 7
minute 19- speed 3.0, incline 8
minute 20- speed 3.0, incline 5
minute 21- speed 3.5, incline 4
minute 22- speed 3.5, incline 3
minute 23- speed 3.5, incline 6
minute 24- speed 3.5, incline 7
minute 25- speed 3.5, incline 8
minute 26- speed 3.0, incline 7
minute 27- speed 3.0, incline 8
minute 28- speed 2.5, incline 0
minute 29- speed 2.5, incline 0
minute 30- speed 2.0, incline 0
What you’ll very quickly notice is that there is no running involved.
What? How could that be? I thought the treadmill was for running. Walking is for old people at retirement homes.
Yeah, and it’s for people who want to get in shape as well, no matter what the age. Walking is the healthiest exercise there is, period. It is the most primitive form of a workout, and it still works exactly as it did for cavemem. When’s the last time you saw a picture of an overweight caveman? You wanna get in shape, you’ve got to get all primitive with it.
When you get comfortable with this workout, and walking at that max pace of 3.5mph starts to not feel like it’s not doing much, increase the speed to 4.5 in that little 5 minute where you would ordinarily be at 3.5. That’ll probably be feel like a fast walk or light jog. Once you’re comfortable, increase the speed a half mile per hour.
It should take about 2 weeks for you to feel like a speed increase is in order. Do this exercise 5 days a week if you can. Put a sweatshirt on while doing it, two sweatshirts if you can.
When you’re really comfortable with it, you can start taking this beyond 30 minutes. But you’ve got to crawl before you walk, walk before you run, run before you jump… ah well, you get the picture.
I haven’t written anything in this space in almost a year. Honestly I can’t even remember when I last blogged about weight loss and fitness, not that it’s been far from my mind or anything like that. I’d post some pictures if I were a more liberal kinda guy, but who wants to see me anyway?
For the past year I’ve made fitness and a decent diet part of my every day life. I’ve used Dr. Ian Smith’s 90 day Fat Smash Diet as the foundation, and tinkered with some of the portion sizes, tried a few new food items (veggie burgers, whole wheat/multi-grain wraps, etc), and stayed in the gym as much as I can. I think I held off from blogging about weight loss and getting in shape because after I dropped 55+ lbs (later, 70+ lbs), I wasn’t entirely comfortable with myself just yet. I wasn’t really aware of how the world saw me.
There are two main reasons for this.
One is that I’ve been making most of my money primarily in the online space for the past two years. And while that’s a blessing because I can work from home and create a schedule that fits my lifestyle, it also doesn’t put me in contact with people I might ordinarily see on a day to day basis, like co-workers and random strangers I’d meet in a bar after leaving the office or studio.
Two is because when I started this life-changing diet, I was in the midst of a blogging job that I was being contracted by MTV.com to write. That was the Sucker Free blog. Though I enjoyed writing that blog, and mostly enjoyed working with MTV, there was a bit of brain drain that came from slogging through 8 hours a day of RSS feeds on artists and news that I may not have personally cared much about. Not to say I don’t care about hip-hop music or what’s going in the culture, but the shenanigans that often need to be blogged and reported on can begin to weigh on you after a while. Especially coming from the print world, with a journalism degree, and beyond that, the music world, with records in stores and all that goes into that neverending grind.
That said, when the recession began to rear its ugly head, I decided that when the blogging job ended, I was going to pursue something more high maintenance– namely, television– or nothing at all. I went to LA in June of last year, about a month after I’d departed the fold at MTV, and met with a very high profile reality television production company. The development executives who I’d been primarily dealing with at the company departed in the midst of our work.
So I continued writing my Scratch blog for XXLMag.com, wrote many pieces for XXL, and did a 50 Cent interview for Complex.com. There may be something else of interest, or perhaps something more high profile in the midst of all of that, but honestly I’m just drawing a blank right now.
I mainly bring all these things up because for years prior to this I had been ripping and running everywhere, taking meetings, doing interviews, chasing money, and so on. Typically I would eat very poorly while doing that, and my weight ballooned as a result. There was an obvious weight gain that started around the time I entered my final semester of college. I recently saw a picture that my aunt took of me at graduation, it was startling to say the least. I thought I was in decent shape back then (May 2004). But once you get above 230 pounds, trust me, you’re just plain ol’ fat. Dropping or adding 10 pounds will do little to change that.
Let me not digress. With blogging, I was making money, basically, sitting on my ass all day. Not literally, but figuratively. I’ve got a phone, I’ve got internet, I’ve got a blackberry, I’ve got contacts. The entire world was (and still is) at my fingertips, so let me stop stressing so much, lower my expectations, work smarter, not harder, be more disciplined with time management and deadlines, and just live life.
And that simple paragraph that you just read has allowed me, even in the recession, to kind of maintain a level head about things, particularly dieting and staying in shape.
In the past, I might have lost some weight, and then when something earth-shattering happened I’d let it affect my whole lifestyle. I’d let it throw me out of wack, lose all sense of discipline and start eating fast food, stay up late drinking soda and eating chips, and basically become completely unhealthy in the process.
Reality is, things are definitely not going great in the midst of the recession. A year and change later, there are tons of opportunities out there to do things, but the money has been slower. You have to do about 50 times the amount of work to make even less than you were making before. It’s pretty depressing. I won’t even address the music side of my life. If media has you doing 50 times the amount of work, music has you doing 300 times the amount of work, and you’re lucky if you EVER even see a dime.
Still, I haven’t let that throw my fitness and diet to the wind. I’m in the gym five days a week, lifting weights, hitting the treadmill, the elliptical, stairmaster, and so on. When I’m not in the gym, I’m either at home running on my treadmill, running stairs in my building, doing p90x workouts, or going for 6 mile runs through my neighborhood in Staten Island (which isn’t the safest thing in the world, rest assured). Sometimes I play basketball, but I’ve found that it doesn’t really give me the workout I need.
I admit, I probably don’t eat as well as I should. I eat sometimes as many as 10 times a day, and snack a lot. And when I snack, it’s not always the healthy stuff. Late nights you can still catch me eating 3-4 bags of Baked Lays, Doritos, pretzels, and so on. I drink a lot of diet soda. I eat a pint of Haagen Dazs frozen yogurt almost daily. Sometimes I swap the yogurt for ice cream, straight up. It’s not uncommon for me to eat an entire box of cereal in one sitting, or drink a complete pint of milk (2% tho).
But I don’t eat anything fried. I NEVER eat fast food. Once in a while I eat some candy, but it’s rare. And if I do, it’s never a chocolate bar. More like a few Twizzlers. I keep all types of oil and butter out of my diet completely. I consume very little in the way of bread products. I mean, there are weeks that go by without bread even entering my system at all. The only time I can remember eating any pasta was when I stage managed the Red Bull Snow Scrapers Event on the East River. It was 10 degrees in February, and there was nothing else to eat. It was die, or eat pasta. What choice do you think I made?
I keep the refrigerator overstocked with fruits, mostly apples (granny smith, red and golden delicious) and grapes (red and green, seedless). I also make my own salads- lettuce, peppers, carrots, an assortment of beans and lentils, mixed with some grilled chicken. Since I’m home more often than not, I try to cook for myself, keep everything I eat relatively natural. For dinner it’s a lot of brown rice, steamed vegetables, and more grilled chicken.
In all honesty, my diet is a little boring. But I’m single and live by myself. I’m also not big on taking hours to prepare things. A lot of times I just want something quick and easy to make. In a lot of ways, I need the healthy diet I keep now to mimic fast food. I was raised on burgers and fries. Not exactly Debbie Does Salad, as my former journalism professor, Frederick Kaufman, once so eloquently put it in Harper’s magazine.
And now that you’ve finally made it to the end of this longwinded post, the point of it all was to say this– once you rewire your system, as I did with the Fat Smash Diet, you should be relatively good to go from there. You could very possibly eat poorly for a few weeks and still be quite alright, not gain any real weight back. I certainly don’t feel like I’m the best eater in the world right now, but I have a healthy relationship with exercise and the gym, and though I certainly feel better working out when I am eating properly, as long as I’m active I feel alright.
So roughly a year later, so-so eating and all, I’m 190 pounds. From the range of 255-260. I run a mile in less than 7 minutes, and can keep that pace for an hour. Went from barely benching 50 pounds to 130 (since December ’08, basically). Oh yeah, and I can drop another 10-15 pounds any time I feel like it. But alas, that’s a post for another day.
Since I posted that blog about reaching 199 pounds on the Fat Smash Diet, I’ve gotten a lot of feedback from different folks I know within the entertainment industry. It’s been pretty random actually, considering I didn’t really send that blog entry to that many people, and I hadn’t been writing too frequently anyway. This internet thing, I tell ya boy.
Anyway, everyone has shown a lot of support, and while they don’t comment (god knows why, I guess they aren’t the commenting type), they do tell me they wanna try the diet. I say go right ahead! Hit me up if you have any questions, I encourage you to.
But here’s the thing, the diet alone is not going to lose the weight for you. It’s up to you, the person, to stay committed, stay disciplined, and keep yourself inspired enough to reach your goal weight.
What inspires me is how I feel when I wake up in the morning, how I feel during the day, how I feel at night. The energy I have is so great, and I don’t ever want to lose that feeling. It’s beyond weight loss at this point, like it was beyond weight loss after my first 9 days on the diet. It’s a lifestyle change. It’s about feeling better more than it is about hitting a certain weight (although that always helps).
People who know me know i’m a fan of words. The words I use to work this diet’s magic are the following- Diligence, Perseverance, Tenacity.
Diligence because you need to keep working at it, and working at it hard.
Perseverance for those moments when you think you wanna give up, and you have to make it through.
Tenacity for the way you should treat your exercise.
So that’s it people, today is the last official day on the diet. It’s actually been a couple more days than 90, but like I’ve said before, phase 2 started on a Wednesday for me, so I wanted to make sure the 11 weeks following the 9 day detox were carried out evenly.
Hopefully I don’t pass out tomorrow, cause I got a feeling it’s going to be brutal. A few tips from Coolrunning.com.
- Slow down early – The later you wait to slow down, the more dramatically you’ll slow down at the end and the longer it will take to recover from the run. Walk breaks, early and often, help you lower the exertion level, which conserves resources for the end and reduces heat buildup.
- Wear lighter garments – Loose-fitting clothes allow heat to escape. Don’t wear cotton clothing. Sweat soaks into cotton, causing it to cling to your skin, increasing heat buildup. Several materials will wick the perspiration away from your skin: Coolmax, polypro, etc. As moisture leaves your skin, you receive a cooling effect, and these types of materials are designed for this
- Pour water over yourself – Up to 70 percent of the heat you can lose goes out through the top of your head so regularly pour water over your hair (even if, like me, you are hair challenged). Regularly pouring water on a light, polypro (or a similar material) singlet or tank top will keep you cooler.
- Drink cold water – Not only does cold water leave the stomach of a runner quicker than any type of fluid, it produces a slight physiological cooling effect – and an even greater psychological cooling effect. But don’t drink too much either.