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How to Keep Warm When Running in the Cold

HCA Virginia Sports Medicine November 03, 2014

By Douglas Cutter, MD, CAQSM – HCA Virginia Sports Medicine

The temperature at the beginning of the HCA Virginia 8k, American Family Fitness Half-Marathon, and Anthem Richmond Marathon is projected to be a chilly 30 degrees on Saturday morning, November 15th, and many runners are taking different precautions for the unexpectedly cool start.

The cold shouldn’t be a major problem, but runners need to be aware of the extra challenge these conditions present. Participants will want to dress in layers, including a hat, that can be shed as body temperatures rise during the race. A base layer of wicking material is also important to draw moisture away from the body, because wet clothes will create chills.

In this temperature range, runners lose moisture not only by sweating, but also through the water vapor expelled when exhaling in the cold, dry air. It is critically important to main good hydration because of this compounding loss of fluid.

Hydration should consist of mostly water before and in the beginning stages of the races, and then moving to on-the-course sports drinks that will provide replenishment of electrolytes as well. There are more than enough hydration stations to accommodate runners needs on the course, but many are comfortable carrying their own via a race belt or hand-held bottle.

The bottom line - as long as runners dress appropriately and stay hydrated, they should have a great day on the course!

For further inquiries about running safety, performance, or other sports-related injuries, contact Douglas Cutter, MD, CAQSM, at hcavasportsmed.com, HCA Virginia Sports Medicine’s Boulders location at 804-560-6500, or like us on Facebook..

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