When I was younger, I attended running camps in Big Bear, the mountains about 2 hours east of Los Angeles. At higher elevation and warmer temperatures, my body did not always react well. My parents and I came up with a solution: create a pocket in the back of my shirt to insert an ice pack to help keep my body from overheating.

I always considered myself lucky to live in San Diego County. It is the perfect place to live as a cross country runner because you can run year round without having to worry about freezing winters, heavy rains, or scorching summers. However, living in Houston has been a different experience. I have lived in Houston for the past 3 summers where the temperature averages at 90 degrees with about 90 percent humidity. It also rains most afternoons during the summer. The only tolerable time to exercise is very early in the morning or late in the afternoon.

            I did not easily adjust to this routine and although I swore as a cross country runner that I would never do it, I decided to join a gym. I quickly discovered all the great resources that gyms provide! I thought I would only go to the gym to run on the treadmill but being at a gym made it easy to change up my routine. I would run several days a week while alternating using the stationary bikes, ellipticals, free weights, machines, doing core workouts or attending classes such as zumba or yoga. And most importantly, it allowed me to stay in shape while avoiding the heat!

            Because I run, I have learned the importance of working out despite the heat, even if it means that you have to go inside and enjoy a little air conditioning to cool off.