Tips For A Safe Run This Summer In Western Ma Summer Summer's coming and the warm weather has finally arrived in Western Ma along with that desire to be active outside and take a nice run or bike ride.  I myself really enjoy to take a nice run, especially on a cool evening when the sun has just set.  If you are one of those people who likes to be active and run on a weekly basis, here are a few tips to keep you safe on those rather hot days........

1.  Check the indexes outside before you run.  The air quality index and heat index are both good to be aware of before you strap on your shoes and head out. If the air quality index is code orange  and you are sensitive to air pollution and/or upper respiratory problems, you may want to wait.  If it is code red, it is not suitable for anyone to run.  The heat index is another good way to gauge how hot it is going to feel outside by taking into consideration the air temperature and the relative humidity.  Local Western Ma weather channels should have both the air quality and heat index information for Western Massachusetts and the Pioneer Valley.

2. Body adjustments to the weather.  It is a different time of year now and your body is going to respond differently to the hotter temperatures.  This meaning that what you could do in the fall may not seem so easy in the hot summer.  Give your body time to adjust to these temperatures before pushing a hard run right away.

3.  Hydrate. Two hours prior drink about 16oz. of water before you run.  This will give you enought time to go to the bathroom if needed before your body starts to be active.  A run longer than 4 miles and you should start thinking about bringing some water with you and anything over 60 minutes should require a sports drink to replace the electrolytes you are depleting. Be aware of any warning sign of heat exhaustion such as heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea, vomiting, and/or fainting. With heat exhaustion, a person's skin may feel cool and moist.

4.  Grab a friend.  Running with a friend is fun, allows you to be active while spending some good time together and also keeps you safe if you were to every experience heat exhaustion or heat stroke on your run.

5.  Run early or later at night.  When the sun is beating so hard and there is a lower temperature, it allows for a nice run.  If your schedule permits, run early or later.

6. Clothing.  Wear light colored clothing and stick to fabrics like polyester, lycra, nylon, coolMax, and dry-fit to keep you cool while enjoying your daily exercise in the beautiful Western Ma skies.

7.  Wear sunscreen or take a route with some shade.

8.  Have fun and get healthy!