Journal Entry: Beat the Heat... With Intervals?

by Ed Arntson August 30, 2018 0 Comments

Journal Entry: Beat the Heat... With Intervals?

Beat the heat - with intervals???

Wait - what?

You’re thinking - Intervals are challenging, how am I “beating the heat” by running intervals in the thick of the summer heat?

Humidity was born in Virginia Beach and has established permanent residence here from May through late September. It also makes sporadic visits throughout October.

The humidity makes even early morning training both a physical and mental grind as the humidity causes extreme water loss, makes it difficult to breathe, and in general just makes exercise far more challenging. Anyone who lives on the Atlantic sea board or down in Florida where Dr. Minkoff and crew live knows exactly what I am talking about.

In early June, I started to increase my weekly long runs and the distance on my weekly threshold runs. I continued until mid-July when I took leave to visit my family in Minnesota. Even in June, the humidity was already oppressive.

After a brief respite from any sort of real humidity in Minnesota for two weeks (high 50s/low 60s in the morning…with a crispness to the air), I returned to Virginia Beach with a different sort of program in mind to avoid suffering so much in the heat/humidity of the mid-Atlantic region.

With an Army Physical Fitness test approaching in early October, I immediately thought about layering more intervals into my training over the next 8 weeks. Not only do intervals increase your overall fitness level as a form of work capacity training, but they help you burn more fat because of the intensity of the training.

 

Now, how exactly does running intervals - outside - help me beat the heat in the thick of the August heat?

  1. Long runs (especially), long bike rides, etc. take their toll on you in this weather. They grind you down and require you to bring along additional fluids, gels, etc.

    Because you’re likely running intervals from a fixed position (I run mine on a local junior high 400 meter track) such as a track, treadmill, one end of the block - you don’t need to lug along all the extra water, food, etc. to support you during the run.

  2. Intervals have a set rest period which allows athletes to rehydrate, rest and bring down their heart rate between rounds.

  3. If you are having a rough day (don’t feel well, humidity is crushing your soul) - you likely aren’t stuck 3-4 miles out on your long run.

    Hopefully you’re just a short jog or car ride from your home base where you can return and live to train another day.

 

Here is what I have experienced over the last three weeks here in Virginia Beach.

My fitness is improving week to week. My 400 and 800 times are improving each week and my recovery between rounds is also improving as I get stronger week over week.

I am also not dehydrated until noon like I am with my long 10-12 mile runs in the humid conditions. Simply put, intervals have allowed me to keep up the intensity in my training while adjusting for the weather conditions that will exist here until late September.

Not only have I enjoyed the change as I try to hold on to whatever speed I still have left in my body, I have also enjoyed the ability to hydrate more often during my training and in a way - “beat the heat.”

Interval training allows us to train hard and SMART in the closing months of summer.

I would encourage everyone - even if you don’t have an Army PT test coming up - to jog over to your local high school and give ‘em a shot.

Take care and talk to you next month.

- Ed

Ed Arntson
Ed Arntson

"I've been taking Perfect Amino for 9 years now. I continue to take PerfectAmino because it offers unparalleled recovery from challenging training sessions. As an Army officer who is constantly on the go, Perfect Amino is the best product to fit my busy lifestyle. I also take Bodyhealth Complete + Detox multi-vitamins every day. If you're looking for the best multi-vitamin on the market - stop looking. BH Complete + Detox provides your body with everything it needs and keeps you going strong."



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