Sun, Sprays and SPF

It’s finally summertime in West Michigan and I am excited to be sweating it up out on the trails! There are some different challenges to trail running when it’s hot, muggy, and humid, hydration depleting weather. Are you drinking enough water during the day to keep yourself hydrated during the run? While that’s a question road runners will ask themselves too, it’s even more important when you are working harder climbing all those hills. Are you wearing SPF? Yes, you are mostly shaded by trees on the run but what about when you are hanging out before or afterwards? It doesn’t take long to get sunburn. What about bug spray? Ticks are a concern this year. And you want to make sure to steer clear of poison ivy. Especially if you are allergic to the three leaved plant!

Did I just make trail running sound dangerous? I didn’t mean to! There are just a few tips to review this time of year to make sure you are safe, protected and having fun.

1. Hydration: Remember, a 100lb person needs 67 oz of water daily and a 200lb person needs 134 oz. So drink up! All day, not just before you go out to run.
2. Sunscreen: Wear at least a 30 SPF and remember that it only takes15 minutes of sun exposure to develop sunburn in a fair skinned person, like myself. Melanoma is no joke!
3. Insect repellent: mosquitos, ticks, deer flies, bees, hornets, etc. A spray that’s sweat proof is my suggestion. I like Avon’s Skin So Soft or Off! Sweatproof bug sprays.
4. Poison Ivy: Sometimes you can’t avoid coming into contact with it. So make sure after a run you rinse off immediately if you are prone to having allergic reactions to this plant.

So that’s it! Just take a few precautions before you head out, and then enjoy your trail run. Michigan has the best summers, in my opinion, so we shouldn’t let them fly by without appreciating the nature, fresh air and quiet peacefulness of the woods.