Running the roads: Marathon preparation

What’s one of the activities that gives life in Jacksonville its special flavor? Let’s try running. And one of the biggest events on the calendar is this weekend’s 26.2 with Donna, the beach-area marathon founded by former WTLV news anchor Donna Deegan to raise funds to fight breast cancer.

It’s a fact: Runners don’t like temperatures that are too hot or too cold. In the last two years, the race has fallen into the latter category, with record lows and nasty onshore winds buffeting the participants as they ran the 26.2 miles from Ponte Vedra Beach to the Mayo Clinic. This year, the expectation is the opposite problem – temperatures could be in the 70s as the race progresses, which is nice for ordinary activities but a bit on the warm side for distance runners. Add the humidity near the Atlantic Ocean, and you’ve got a recipe for mass dehydration.

So, how do runners deal with changes in the weather? You can find out in today’s Florida Times-Union (http://members.jacksonville.com/sports/local-sports/local-running/2014-02-21/story/runners-will-need-adjust-262-donna-heating). Some of the advice falls basically under the heading of common sense. But other suggestions, like dressing for the weather at the finish line rather than the start, might be new to many.

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