Summer is coming.
And for desert dwellers such as myself, this means things are about to get hot, hot, HOT!
If I had to choose, I’d rather run in a light, rainy drizzle than on a hot, sunny day. I know, I sound crazy. But growing up in the Pacific Northwest instilled a deep appreciation for a cool day, especially when it comes to running. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the sun. Spending time in the sunshine makes me feel all warm and fuzzy…and happy. I don’t even mind the plethora of freckles it puts on my face. But when it’s time to run, the sun is not my friend. It beats down on me, slows me down and sucks my strength dry.
Moving to the southern Nevada desert last July was quite the shock. I’d wake up to run at 5AM and even then, it would be 90 degrees outside. At first I suffered. But I was determined to acclimate and over time I did. In fact, I found that when I ran one of my favorite team (and arguably hardest) relays, the Cascade Lakes Relay race that goes from Diamond Lake to Bend, OR, I felt more prepared to take on that summer mountain heat than I ever have.
As the days are getting longer and hotter here in the desert, I’m starting to prep myself for how my runs will change, both mentally and physically. I’m getting up earlier, drinking more water and stockpiling my favorite supplies. Speaking of supplies, I am so dependent on the following things. Seriously, they are saving my life!
1. Sunscreen – Sun Bum Signature Sunscreen
Finding the right sunscreen can be challenging, because each of us has a different skin type. So what might work for one of us might not work for the rest of us. I have super sensitive skin, and frequently break out in hives after applying things to my skin. I did a bunch of research on sunscreen, because I wanted to find something that was chemical free, non-greasy and mineral based. I came across Sun Bum, gave it a try and am now hooked! Sun Bum’s premium, mineral based sunscreen is specifically designed to offer the very best broad spectrum protection to those who work and play hard in the sun. It doesn’t bleed into your eyes (a big plus for runners), won’t make your hands greasy, and won’t come off during the most rigorous activities in the water, wind, or blazing hot sun. It also has the following properties:
- Broad Spectrum UVA/UVB Protection
- Water Resistant – 80 Minutes
- Non-Greasy Non-Migrating Paraben Free / PABA Free / Oil Free
- Fragrance Free
- Oxybenzone Free/ Vitamin A Free
- Hypoallergenic Vitamin E Enriched
Sun Bum Sunscreens are also tested, approved and recommended by The Skin Cancer Foundation. This is so important, because 1 in 5 people will get skin cancer in their lifetime. The good news is, you can decrease that risk by 80%, just by wearing approved sunscreens. So, don’t be that 1 out of the 5. Wear sunscreen!
2. SPF Chapstick – Sun Bum SPF 30 Lip Balm
One of my pet peeves is dry lips after running. Another is chapstick that is all thick and cruddy after a run. I realize the later is inevitable, but I set out on my search for the perfect running chapstick with hope that there was something better out there. I was not in the least bit surprised when I came across the Sun Bum SPF 30 Banana Lip Balm. Already a big fan of their sunscreen, I eagerly made my purchase. Lets just say that I’m now in love with my chapstick! It’s smooth, it tastes good and it contains added Aloe and Vitamin E that will protect and moisturize your lips all day long. It also has the following properties:
- Relieves the drying effects of sun, wind and sea
- Restores and nourishes chapped lips
- Contains soothing Cocoa Butter Gluten Free / 100% Vegan
- Petrochemical Free PABA Free
3. Sunglasses – Pepper’s Cutthroat Polarized Sport Sunglasses
I really struggle with sunglasses, meaning I always loose them! As a result, I’ve never invested in a pair of “expensive” or “quality” sunglasses. I suspect this little habit of mine might drive my husband, an aficionado of sunglasses, crazy. I’ve never felt the need to get a higher grade of sunglasses, that is until I moved to southern Nevada. I swear the sun is just brighter here. Or maybe it’s the lack of trees providing shade? Either way, I can’t run while squinting my eyes. So I went to REI and tried a bunch on. I finally settled on the Pepper’s Cutthroat Polarized Sport Sunglasses. They fit like a glove! They wrap around my head and sit on top of my ears snuggly, but not too tight. They’re light weight and comfortable and they look pretty cool…I think. And they are so affordable, which works for me since I’ll probably loose them at some point (just kidding…kind of).
Another cool perk is that all of Pepper’s Eyewear come with a lifetime warranty. A big sigh of relief for people like me!
4. Water source – Nathan SpeedDraw Plus Flask
So I’ve never been one to run with water, for several reasons.
1. The difference in balance throws my running off (or so it seems)
2. The sound of the water swishing makes me have to go to the bathroom
3. It makes me feel bogged down.
But running in this sun and heat? I don’t have a choice. Unless I’m shooting for a heat stroke I have to run with water. There are several great running water bottles out there, but I’ve settled on Nathan Sport SpeedDraw Plus Flask. It’s lightweight, easy and comfortable to hold on to and it doesn’t leak. It also has a nice little zip up pouch that you can put an energy snack in or even your keys. Some more of it’s great attributes include:
- Easy-squeeze, ergonomic, lightweight bottle is BPA-free and taste-free
- Soft-grip cap for easy on-and-off, even with sweaty hands
- Silicone nozzle keeps shape and never leaks
5. Bondi Band Headband
I am definitely a headband girl. I wear them because they keep sweat from dripping into my eyes (and I’m a huge sweater), they hold my headphones in place and they keep my hair out of my face. They also serve as a protection for your forehead from the sun. The forehead and eye area is one of the most common places to get skin cancer, due to constant sun exposure. So a running headband is always a part of my getup. However, when stepping outside feels like you’re stepping into an oven, the last thing you want is anything making your head feel warmer than it already is. That’s why I LOVE Bondi Band Solid Moisture Wicking Headband. It’s super lightweight and airy, stretchable, breathable and 100% American made. They also act as great ear warmers in colder climates.
So there you have it! Don’t let the blaze keep you from getting out there and running your boot-tay off. Just, you know, be smart about it. And wear sunscreen. And stay hydrated. And have fun!
Disclosure: At BUB, we review items we believe are the best for a family. This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, we will receive compensation. We test each product personally and give high marks to only the very best. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.