Houston, It’s Summer Time

Summer is here and the weather is hot. Check out these tips from Ambassadors Heather and Marcus on how they keep up with their training in the summer.


Summer runs on the Buffalo Bayou

Summer Running in Houston
By Ambassador Heather Foley

“I had an epic disaster run this Saturday.”

“I had to cut my run short today, I felt awful.”

These are both direct quotes from actual conversations I have had with friends recently relating to running in the rising heat and humidity that we all know so well.

Running in Houston in the summer time is no joke. It’s hard. It’s uncomfortable. But you know what? It makes you stronger and tougher too. I recently returned from running my second 100 miler in Bryce Canyon, UT. Most was at altitude, it had some ridiculous elevation change, and had a lot of running along exposed ridges in 90+ degree heat. Whenever I have run in these mountain races I get the same question, “How did you train for this?!” they ask in exasperation of how a flatlander could possibly run in all these unknown variables. My answer is usually pretty simple. Train in Houston Summers.

It can be tempting to give up on the great outdoors as soon as those conditions get tough, but I promise you, if stick with it and just make a few adjustments, you will come out a resilient runner and you may even see some PRs come a little easier when the glorious Fall comes.

Here are my favorite pieces of advice for embracing your summer of running.

I found this guy taunting me on the sidewalk after a run. He was moving faster than me at that point.

I found this guy taunting me on the sidewalk after a run. He was moving faster than me at that point.

Manage your expectations. This is job #1. If your usual pace through the Winter and lovely Spring was an X:00 Pace and now you find that it is significantly slower and/or now running at X:00 pace now nearly kills you….RELAX. If a loop around Memorial Park used to take you 30 mins and now it takes 40 with walk breaks, that is all normal. You are not a bad runner. You should not give up on your race goals. You should not throw away your running shoes. When the temps and humidity come down, you will go back to those usuals. But until then, do not waste any time internalizing those as anything negative about your running.

  • Listen to your body. This is a year round tip, but especially important for this time of year. If you need to slow down. Do it. If you need to cut short. Do it. If you need to soak your head in the water fountain. Get in there. The summer time is not a time to be governed by the pace in your watch. Just run on the effort that feels manageable to you each day. No need to suffer or put your health in jeopardy for a training run or for a hobby that is supposed to be enjoyable. Now, I am all for pushing my limits but a Wednesday night of 88 degrees and 92% humidity for a 5 miler is not worth it. Live to run another day.
  • Fuel properly. Drinking a bottle of water in your car on the way to the park won’t cut it. Make being adequately hydrated a top priority every day.
  • Ambassador Lindsay and I after a soggy 5:30 am workout with Wills Hills

    Ambassador Lindsay and I after a soggy 5:30 am workout with Wills Hills

    Work with the weather, not against it. Try to run earlier in the morning than you might usually do or later in the evening. If it can be avoided, don’t run in the hottest part of the day. Wear clothing that is cool and breathable and maybe think about some sunscreen, sunglasses or hat.

    Stay strong, running buddies. It will pay off later and in the meantime, pat yourself on the back a little extra for suffering through it all. We are all in this together!

    Conquering the Summer Slump
    Summer Running
    By Ambassador Marcus Lewis

    Running in the summer heat can be a challenge, with temps in the upper 90’