General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please! Rss Feed  
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2013-08-18 10:05 PM

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Subject: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
I am racing my first HIM on Saturday and it is supposed to be a brutal 98 degrees on a course with little or no shade. The water is so unseasonably warm, it will not be a wetsuit legal swim. Anyhow, I have never had a race this hot, and never done a HIM eitther, so what are your best hot weather racing tips? Best tips to keep body temperature down? Items for special needs bags? I am up for any and all suggestions. I know the obvious of staying hydrated, etc, but I though I would call on the more experienced people to see if there are simple things or tips that have helped you in conditions such as these. Fire away!


2013-08-18 10:09 PM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Wear a hat. Covering your face will keep you cooler and you can also dump ice in there at each aid station and put the ice filled hat back on. I saw people doing this during my HIM and I did it for my IM and it was awesome. Obviously drink lots. Try to down a bottle of gatoraid or something before the swim and...umm...return the excess water back to the lake as you're swimming. This way you'll start with some extra water in you. Good luck!

Edited by Blastman 2013-08-18 10:19 PM
2013-08-18 10:17 PM
in reply to: Blastman

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Relax........you've put in the training......trust in your ability and your fitness. And remember to have fun out there
2013-08-18 10:33 PM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Minneapolis, MN
Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Arm coolers help me. Roll them off pre race so you can easily roll them on. Then on the run wet them and put ice down them.
2013-08-18 10:53 PM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Here's a useful article: http://beta.active.com/triathlon/articles/keep-your-cool-10-ways-to...

I did my first Oly in very hot conditions last year - 101°F on the run course, with no shade and no wind on one 3 mile long portion of the 2 laps course. I found the physical location of Hell, especially on the second lap! I made it to the finish line, albeit slightly slower than I was aiming for. Our swim didn't allow any wetsuits either due to the heat.

First up, throw any time estimates out of the window as you really don't want to go too fast as you may DNF. The main thing to remember when it's hot is you must slow down, take hydration and electrolytes on board (especially sodium), and be very careful about pacing yourself. Wearing a visor on the run is a great idea (I find I'm too hot wearing a hat), and if ice or wet sponges are offered at the aid stations, dump it on your head along with water, put it in tri-shorts pockets, down your tri-top, bra etc. Trust me, it helps enormously. Also walk through the aid stations to get as much hydration etc on board,

One amusing tip - don't be tempted to put more than one ice-cube at a time down your tri-shorts, as they collect in a "certain" area and start jiggling around. Trust me, it's hard to run and laugh hysterically at the same time
2013-08-19 8:21 AM
in reply to: wartho

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!

1. Another vote for arm coolers. I wore them during my IM and they were a big help. Dump cold water on them every chance you get.

2. Don't let your ego get in the way. Slow it down !



2013-08-19 8:52 AM
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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Great advice from all....don't have much to add but pace conservatively and really listen to your body. Heat exhaustion is insidious and can start by messing with your mind before you feel physically unwell. For example, I once spent the latter part of a long ride and an entire brick run craving an iced Coke and trying to figure out how I could make that happen because I didn't have ice made in my freezer. Uh...I live within a five minute walk of at least six fast food places? Don't want to scare you but it can be a slippery slope into poor judgment that can affect your safety on the course. Sometimes I test myself by doing mental math, calculating my pace, etc. If I can't do it I know I need to slow down and cool off.

Beyond that, be prepared for the possibility that the heat may mess with your appetite and tolerance of nutrition or (depending on said nutrition) what it tastes like. Soft, gooey, and warm will be the name of the game. Some liquid nutrition curdles or separates. Maybe take some backup in case what you've brought isn't palatable or edible. I also find that I want and can get down fewer calories in a hard workout or race in extreme heat that I normally can. Not sure if it's the heat itself or the much greater amount of fluids I have to take in. As for fluids, just keep drinking on a regular plan, electrolyte drink as well as plain water. I normally do every 10-15 minutes on the bike, and 10 on the run; more if I'm thirsty.

Best of luck!

Edited by Hot Runner 2013-08-19 8:54 AM
2013-08-19 10:38 AM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Pour cold water in the vents of your helmet and all over your jersey/shorts at every aid station on the bike. The evaporative cooling of water all over you on the bike can be really dramatic.

On the run, at every aid station drink water. Pour water all over you. If ice is available put it down the back of your tri jersey/front of your tri jersey/front of your shorts near your femoral arteries.

These things really work.

Be prepared for your running shoes to be wet.
2013-08-19 3:06 PM
in reply to: wannabefaster

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
make sure you come off the bike hydrated, its almost imposible to catch you hydration when you hit the run
2013-08-19 4:05 PM
in reply to: BuckHamilton

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Remember to smile and enjoy the race.  You have spent so much time getting ready for it, don't let me memory pass you by...take it all in...
2013-08-19 5:05 PM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Sodium.... my first HIM the run was in 95 degree weather, of course no shade. Cramped really bad on the run, or death march as I recall. I took a couple of salt tabs on the bike, not near enough. Afterwards a few of the veterans told me that in the hot weather conditions should aim for about 800 to 1000 mg of sodium per hour. I use Saltstick capsules, 2 every 30 minutes in hot weather.


2013-08-19 8:21 PM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!

Set your watch to beep every 5 minutes while on the bike to remind you to hydrate and pour cold water on your head at each run aid station.

I also found a light weight disposable/one use towel (almost like a shop towel) from my LBS. I think it was called a Go-Towel. (It's one which you drop in water to expand)  I carried it in my fuel belt and expanded at an aid station and re-wetted at each aid station.

2013-08-20 5:09 AM
in reply to: Prtlndblnd

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Start slower than you think on the run. If you overdo it and start to cook, your heart rate will rise and will be very difficult to get under control, even if you stop/walk. Unless you've trained for a 7:30 mile or less, you're going to walk the hills. Don't worry -- you'll have a lot of company. Let heart rate and perceived effort pace your run.

If the aid stations have ice, carry some on the run. Fill a pocket and carry a few cubes in your hands.

I have used and liked the cooling sleeves for full sun. Make sure to keep them wet. Good luck!
2013-08-20 7:35 AM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Pace yourself slower than you think is necessary. Don't wait until the run for this.
2013-08-20 9:17 AM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Pacing is the key. I don't know if you use a HRM, but if you do, stay in your easy zones, particularly on the bike and the beginning of the run. If you don't use HR, keep the perceived exertion level low. I'll second most of the tips about hydrating early and frequently -- be sure you keep your sodium and electrolyte levels up, as well.

Good luck!

Ken
2013-08-20 1:11 PM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
If it's really hot and you perspire a lot, the electrolytes contained in your sports drink and gels may not be sufficient. You should consider looking into adding some supplemental electrolytes like Endurolytes.

I got a handful of salty pretzels at an aid station at IM70.3 Syracuse last year, just as the wheels were starting to come off on my run, and it made a huge difference almost immediately.


2013-08-20 3:39 PM
in reply to: jmk-brooklyn

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
I'm certainly not an expert but one of the things that saved me on the last few super hot triathlons that I didn't see mentioned is a completely frozen handheld in T2, and filling it with ice any time you can along the run. It takes me now approximately 10 extra seconds to deal with in T2, and is TOTALLY worth it.

Totally echo the slowing down, walking hills, and ice in the hat advice as well.
2013-08-20 8:27 PM
in reply to: #4832480

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Any thoughts to using disposable cold packs? One could keep a couple packs in transition, grab before the run and you could break it open on the run and try to keep cool.

I thought about this after a very hot sprint tri. The ice every mile at the aid stations felt so good, but it just wasnt enough.
2013-08-20 10:22 PM
in reply to: #4834881

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Tons of great ideas on here I hadn't thought of! Definitely doing the ice in the hat one. With adding electrolytes, would salt tabs be the easiest way? I was already planning in taking two an hour, one every 30 minutes, and with my Perpetuem and other nutrition that gives me about 675 mg sodium an hour. Sounds like that might not be enough?
2013-08-21 1:17 AM
in reply to: KatieLimb

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Subject: RE: Hot HIM coming up - Best tips please!
Originally posted by KatieLimb

Tons of great ideas on here I hadn't thought of! Definitely doing the ice in the hat one. With adding electrolytes, would salt tabs be the easiest way? I was already planning in taking two an hour, one every 30 minutes, and with my Perpetuem and other nutrition that gives me about 675 mg sodium an hour. Sounds like that might not be enough?


Helpful Ironman article about nutrition (including sodium intake) found here: http://www.ironman.com/triathlon-news/articles/2013/06/race-day-fue...

The best advise seems to be to carry extra sodium tabs, just in case you start to feel effects (cramping or stomach cramping).

Good luck and have fun out there
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