Maree’s 26.2 Journey is my Blog about training for my first marathon. I will be running the Chicago Marathon in October. Follow my Blog to get updates on marathon training.

The hottest days of summer are here, which means I need to think of effective ways to stay cool while running. The most important thing to do in this heat is to stay hydrated. As the long runs become longer, I plan on using my water belt so that I don’t get dehydrated, and keeping up my energy with GU energy packs. Just as important as hydration and nutrition are the clothes that I wear while running. I need clothes that will support my muscles and reduce wind resistance while preventing me from overheating. I love to use my CW-X ¾ Stabilyx Tights, compression socks, or leg sleeves to support the muscles on my legs and keep me cool, but I also need breathable and supportive clothing for my top half.

On my last run this week in 88-degree heat and humidity, I tried out the ASICS Favorite Short Sleeve Tee. Although the weather was still unbearably hot, the top did a good job of keeping me cool. The shirt’s ventilation system means that I get air flow to my skin on my sides and back so that the heat isn’t trapped in the shirt. This top also has 50+ Ultraviolet Protection System to prevent sunburn, which I will probably need on long runs in Chicago at the end of August.

I’m heading to Chicago for the weekend, so I was inspired to check out the race course for the Chicago Marathon. Here is a PDF version of the course map. The course looks fairly easy and flat, taking the runners past attractions like Wrigley Field and starting/ending in Grant Park. The only concern I have is that most of it will be on pavement, and I’m used to running my workouts at least partly on dirt or gravel terrain. I’ll have to practice running on pavement when I go back to school in Chicago so that I’m ready for race day.

*Products donated by Eastbay