In this episode of Fitter & Faster, we chat with Dr. Stacy Sims about the physiological and psychological factors surrounding successful performance in the heat. There's no escaping the fact that races are getting hotter and it's never been more important to arrive at the start line of a race feelin
Publish Date: Jul 09, 2021
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In this episode of Fitter & Faster, we chat with Dr. Stacy Sims about the physiological and psychological factors surrounding successful performance in the heat. There's no escaping the fact that races are getting hotter and it's never been more important to arrive at the start line of a race feeling prepared to tackle the heat and humidity. Dr. Sims—whose own interest in thermoregulation resulted from struggling at hot races one too many times—chats with us about what happens to your body (and mind) as temperatures rise, and the best ways to prepare yourself for this. We discuss different approaches to acclimation, including a sauna protocol which she uses with many top athletes, and common symptoms you might see and feel. We chat through different race day options for keeping yourself cool, including hydration and fueling, ice sponges (where to put them and where not to put them!), and cooling vests. And ultimately, we conclude that racing well in the heat isn't all about physiology, as Dr. Sims puts it: "It's not always the fastest, fittest athlete that wins in the heat—but the smartest, most intelligently prepared one."Later in the show we chat with our resident gear guru Chris Foster about the gear and gadgets he believes can help you train and race well in the heat, some of which is high tech, but some of it will surprise you. He also gives us insights into gear he knows helped some athletes execute great performances at the recent Ironman Coeur D'Alene, where temperatures hit triple digits and there was a marked difference in performances between those who were well prepared for the heat—and those who were not.