Heat Training for Races in Hot Climates August 23, 2019 20:08 Updated Follow Not a Member yet? $25/month Get Purple Patch Education Membership, A complete performance education program for coaches and athletes. SUBSCRIBE You need to sign in to view this page. With summer in full swing and fall races in view, I am getting tons of requests and questions around heat preparation and training. If you're looking toward a hot race day, I recommend integrating this protocol below to arrive better prepared to perform in heat as well as with greater blood volume (and performance readiness) in general. Please note, it is critical that you see this for what it is: A small incremental addition and not a building block of your performance. Your late-season performance will be based almost exclusively on your training, consistency, and execution of the basics. Rules Never execute a heat session on a pure recovery day Never aim to hit key intervals in a heat session Skip the session if you are really lethargic or sick - it is stressful and will only hurt Stop heat prep 2-3 days prior to travel to the race site More is not better Check with your physician if you have any strange feelings, health history, etc How to Execute Option #1 - Sauna Protocol POST workout - only on days of key training (not very easy days) Finish the workout with normal conditions and fueling No hydration in the last 10-15 minutes Post workout refuel is OK No hydration post workout 15-30 minutes in a sauna with no hydration *get out when very uncomfortable. Shower following Rehydrate very gradually over the next 3-5 hours Option #2 - Workout Additions in Heat 30-60 minutes on a trainer or very easy running Make sure it is a hot environment, no fan, as warm as possible. Minimal hydration (you can consume some). No fueling needed ALL Z1 to Z2 Add clothes if you need to increase temperatures No intervals Do not compromise any key sessions If you are time-starved then never compromise the key training. These types of sessions only fit if you have time and energy. Keep in mind, you can only perform this protocol for 10 to 21 days (once or twice annually). Manage yourself and understand the context that we place this in. Results If executed well then you can gain the following results without additional fatigue or depletion. If you simply chase the results without careful self-management, you may get the following results but arrive at race day depleted and tired. If done right, the benefits include: Increase blood volume = better heat transfer and oxygen delivery Earlier sweat threshold = improved cooling Greater sweat rate = improved cooling Lowering of perceived effort at all levels of work Delayed onset of perception of fatigue Emotional readiness to manage heat The little salt and pepper of magic is there but proceed with caution.