We’ve been pretty lucky on Cape Cod so far that the temperature hasn’t been too brutal so far this summer (excuse me one second while I go find some wood to knock on…), but man have we had some rough humidity days!
While our bodies can adapt to the heat over time, there is just nothing we can do about humidity – that thick, heavy, suffocating air is going to get us every time!
I’ve always made a conscious effort to slow down my running in bad humidity in an effort to keep the run “comfortable”, but last night at track practice we were doing a running drill and I pushed way past “comfortable” and ended up on the verge of having a panic attack.
For the drill our coach staggered our starts for a lap around the track so that the faster people started a few seconds after the “slower” group and the goal was to catch/ pass people in front of you (or ideally it would be perfectly timed so that we’d all end up finishing in a pack together).
On about the 3rd lap in I was pushing fairly hard trying not to let anyone pass me (Pam should be proud, a little competitiveness maybe??), I was breathing really hard and as soon as I finished the lap I gasped in for air and got nothing.
I literally was gasping and felt like I just wasn’t getting any air at all and I immediately got claustrophobic and started panicking.
Fortunately Jason was there and he quickly recognized that I was on the verge of freaking out so he grabbed a water bottle and some ice and tried to cool me down and get me to breathe. After about 5 minutes of taking slow breaths I began to feel better, but I was still really freaked out about trying to run hard in the humidity, so Jason and I spent the rest of practice just running slowly around the track while the rest of the group continued with the drill.
I’m hoping next weeks track practice won’t be so humid, but if it is, I plan on taking it easy and not pushing myself quite so hard!
Happy Running and remember today’s PSA:
SLOW FOR HUMIDITY!
Have you ever overdone it running in heat or humidity?
What are your best warm weather running tips?
**This is actually my second incident of overdoing it running in the heat…you can read about my 2013 Falmouth Road Race “incident” HERE**
I live in Houston so I can relate. I have to wear super lose clothing to make sure nothing impedes my breathing. That is so scary 😦
Yeah, someone told me a trick of EXHALING first before you take in a big breath like that, so when I start to feel short of breath now I take a big forceful exhale before I gasp in and I actually think it’s been helping. It was definitely scary though!
Ugh!! Humidity!! I definitely slow way down with the humidity. Not being able to breathe is such a scary feeling. Glad Jason was there and you were able to calm down.
It was very scary! I’m glad he was able to calm me down before I really had a full fledged panic attack!
I live in Los Angeles and just started running in January – as luck would have it this summer was humid (not typical around here) and it definitely made it a bit harder to run and on one day I had to stop a few miles short of a goal – I decided almost passing out was not worth finishing the run.
I agree, never worth risking it – always best to listen to your body and make adjustments to your training! Good luck with your training!