You talked about needing to be active in the sauna for 60 minutes. The sauna I go to is 180 F. How in the hell are you active in 180 degrees? I want to pass out after 20 minutes, and then force myself to endure for another 20. But moving would kill me.This post caught my attention more than others because I had recently been picking other athletes brains about heat training for Western States. Last year I had used the sauna and did "seated sessions" ranging from 30-60 minutes. I also did bikram yoga 2 times a week to help my body and mind prepare for what I might encounter on race day. At times during bikram I felt like I was in an easy bake oven, but it was "tolerable" and I could maintain my sanity for the 1.5 hour class with temperatures ranging between 105-110 degrees. On the other hand, once I open the door to the sauna I am engulfed by a swell of hot air and once the door closes behind me it is time to bake in the box. Typically I sit and stretch, but recently I received some advice that I should be moving constantly while baking. I thought that this would be manageable, but upon first attempt I was quickly aware of reality, it is friggen hot! A sense of suffocation and burning eyeballs came over me, but being stubborn, and feeling like it would pass, I calmed myself down and continued on moving. Toe taps, push ups, air squats, whatever would keep me moving.
I have discovered that is too hot to cry in the sauna, it is too hot for ipods, I've tried magazines and books, but they fall apart and become brittle, heck my pen even melted. My watch comes inside with me put is placed on the floor by the door where it receives a small draft and even there the temperature on it reads 104, while the wall thermometer reads between 160-180 depending on how long the sauna has been cranked up to full power. Can these temperatures for a long period while being active be good for an individual fit or not? People call the cops to report dogs left in cars on hot days, should someone call the police and report that I am doing air squats and jumping around in the sauna?
I went to do a little "intellectual" research online about heat acclimatization and was hoping for medical research, scientific studies, etc. but immediately the page was littered with "extreme training ideas". I want to share a few, but please don't try these!
Idea A: 1. Use a plastic garbage bag (cut the top and two areas for your arms) as the first layer next to your skin and then add additional clothing layers. 2. Put a wetsuit on and then running shorts, shirts, ski cap and get training! This is very difficult to start out with, but will provide intensive heat acclimatization.
Idea B: 1. A close fitting thermal layer near the skin. The purpose of this layer is to hold the sweat and keep your skin relatively comfortable. 2. A waterproof layer that traps the sweat in the first thermal layer. 3. An insulation layer, such as fleece that prevents any heat escaping. Because it is trapped between the two waterproof layers, it never becomes wet. 4. A second waterproof or windproof layer that traps the body’s heat in the insulation layer. 5. In addition, wear hat, gloves and ideally a neck warmer or face mask. 6. Begin exercise.
I do appreciate that the websites warn the reader to consult their doctor before attempting these techniques, I know sharing this with my doctor would probably result with me leaving the office in a straight jacket.
I don't know the answer to the question of how to safely and effectively heat train. Maybe for now I will just order a pair of these Electronic Fat Reducing Sauna Pants , that way I can sit on the couch, plug these bad boys in and eat while losing weight, BRILLIANT!