Could fueling with frozen fluids during my run improve my performance?
Twelve freezer pops
Five ice cubes
I partially broke up the freezer pops and put them in my Nathan's handheld with five ice cubes. I added the ice cubes to help slow the melting of the freezer pops. I put the handheld back in the freezer to allow everything to firm back up. I got dressed in the same outfit I had use the previous evening to simulate the same conditions. Although the temperature was up to mother nature and she had it set a few degrees hotter than the night before. I grabbed my handheld and a few paper towels and headed out the door at 6 p.m.
My hand frozen for the first mile and a half.
The freezer pops melted for the first mile and a half.
The resulting liquid stayed cold to cool through the entire run.
I drank nearly the entire bottle.
I ran 3 minutes faster than the night before.
It's hard to say if I was able to run faster simply by keeping my core temp down with colder fluids. I may have simply been more willing to push through the heat knowing I was wanting to do better.
After attempting this I think an alternative solution might be to ice load my Camelbak and use it even though the run is under an hour that would free up my hand and probably allow for cooler fluids throughout the run.
I now know that wrapping my handheld is a must if it has ice in it as one cold hand does not correlate to a cooler body just a frozen hand.
For me the jury is still out on my ability to maintain my effort in this kind of heat, frozen hydration or not. I do think that the coolness and the sugar combine with my subconscious desire to "dig deeper" to allow me a faster pace.
I encourage you all to find creative ways to still get out there and run in all kinds of conditions. Modification may be key with a dose of flexibility to allow you to beat the heat and if nothing else a good hot run is always a great reason to join your kids for another Popsicle.