July 13th, 2016
A few weeks ago, I attempted to run my first half marathon. On the morning of, however, the day was already so hot and humid at 8a.m. that race officials had to shorten the 13.1 miles to 13 km. Sure, I was disappointed, but when I hit the trail and felt heat, I was more than glad that I wouldn’t have to slog for 2.5 hours in it. Now, it’s almost 6 weeks later and I’ve decided to start re-training for a different half marathon happening this September (second time’s the charm, right?). There’s no time like the present to get started, so I laced up my shoes yesterday, grabbed my favourite running buddy, and out we went.
I should mention that we decided to run at 10:30p.m. because the day had been so hot, and we knew we’d keel over if we went any earlier. Turns out, it STILL felt like it was +30 degree Celsius that late at night; needless to say, we didn’t get very far before legs felt like jelly, and 5km felt like 15. This got me to thinking, if it’s THAT hot and humid out at night, what the heck can we do during the day to stay cool? If there’s one thing you learn about living in Toronto, it’s that the temperature is either +30 or -30 and there’s no real in between, you just have to learn to live with it.
So, to help you better live with the heat that we’re experiencing this week, I’ve decided to compile a list of all those places you can go to hang out where you won’t have to think “oh my goodness, I wish it were winter again”, as those us in the Great White North are prone to do 3 months of the year.
The Chill Ice House: located in Kensington, this bar is made up almost entirely of ice (YES), and rests at a cool -5 degrees. Don’t worry, gloves are provided! And, it’s family-friendly from 11am-6pm. The only drawback? Cover fee, but that might be a small price to pay this humid week.
Be a Mermaid: yep, for $60 you can don a fish tail and splash around like Ariel. Need I say more?
Head to a Water Park: There are more than a handful of fun, not-going-to-break-the-bank waterparks in and around Toronto; yes, even with Ontario Place now closed. The closest ones are found right downtown at the Harbourfront Centre, or a quick ferry ride over to Centre Island (which, let’s face it, is a cool getaway in and of itself).
Morning Walk: If you want to enjoy the shade and hide in the shelter of trees, best to limit your walks to earlier in the morning when the sun hasn’t had a chance to warm the air quite so much, or later at night when its absence makes a walk a little more bearable. Still, there are plenty of cool spots to check out, for free, around Toronto, and this guide will show you a lot of the water features and “oo ah” places that won’t have you melting to see. The best part? A lot of these stops are oh so wonderfully located by places with air conditioning, bonus!
None of these ideas grabbing your attention? Always remember that you can think a little smaller, and that heading to libraries, shaded patios, cool shopping malls, and taking in the latest movie are also good ways to beat the heat. Whatever you decide to do though, make sure you’re staying well hydrated, wearing sunscreen, and have a hat with you. Safety and fun first!