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Sauna Training – 22/03/2020

“If not us, who? If not now, when?”

John F. Kennedy

Crickey, it feels like ages since I wrote one of these with all the stuff going on this week… If you read this blog back last year you would have seen I was doing a lot of sauna training. Now I am going to tell you why I bothered. Was it for my running? Or did I just enjoy taking my kit off to show people my gainz? 💪🏻

Social distancing sauna?

Sweet Sweat

So, I googled “men sauna” to try and find some pics to photoshop and now… I’m questioning my sexuality. In these lonely times this might help some of yous out 👀.

Anyways, I first encountered sauna training early in 2019 when I was asked to be part of a PhD project looking into the connection between sauna training and increased heat tolerance. The main way a sauna does this, is through ‘heat acclimation’. (Science / long words time.)

Your body becomes more efficient with sweating to become better at cooling your engines and reducing the content of electrolytes to produce more dilute sweat. Also, the body increases blood-plasma volume which improves cardiovascular output and stability, helping performance in ALL climates. As a final bonus, it has been shown to produce… EPO yessssssssss. More red blood cells = more oxygen to the muscles + Vo2 Max increase = more PB’s, you ❤️ to see it.

Used whilst running in a heat chamber to test my tolerance for heat… it wasn’t an oral one 😮

I’m not saying it was THE reason I got quicker, but even a 1% improvement for a 16min 5K runner is almost a 10 second PB. All the marginal gains add up. So, how did I do the heat training? It’s not difficult to say, after a run 3 times a week jump straight in the sauna for 30 mins. It’s a lot harder in practise, you really have to force yourself to stay in for the full 30. I nearly passed out a couple of times after standing up…. worth it.

Recapping The Week

Monday – 9.1 miles easy treadmill run @ 7:25min/mile
Tuesday – 9.6 miles acceleration run @ 6:27min/mile average
Wednesday – 8.6 miles easy @ 7:11min/mile
Thursday – REST
Friday – 5 miles easy @ 7:57min/mile
Saturday – 4 miles easy @ 7:12min/mile, then 8.6 miles easy at 8:04min/mile
Sunday – 13.1 miles hard long run @ 5:47min/mile
Totals – 58 miles in the dot in 6hrs & 45mins

Right so, the world is a wee bit odd at the moment. I’ve decided I’m not going to bother to do sessions for now. I’m not racing for now and running is as much of a physical exercise as it is mental. I am going to run when, for how long and how fast I feel on the day. Look after yourself, think before you do things and love to your mothers!

Lots of love,
Will xx


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