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Why Do Mosquitoes Love Runners so Much?

You just got your late afternoon run in, and now you are hitting the pool to cool off. Immediately you notice you are getting eaten up by mosquitoes while no one else is. Why does it always happen this way? The truth is, it’s the running. That doesn’t seem fair at all does it? You’re doing your best at being healthy and getting punished in return. It is a fact that the mosquitoes are attracted to you because you are a runner, but it doesn’t mean that it is a fact you have to live with.

Why Me? Mosquitoes Do Love Runners!

As a runner, mosquitoes are coming straight for you. Why is that? The main reason… carbon dioxide. Mosquitoes are attracted to carbon dioxide, and you are creating and releasing about four times as much as the average person. So naturally, the mosquitoes are coming after you first. You are also releasing lactic acid, and the surface temperature of your body is higher. These too attract mosquitoes. While you assume, you are rather sweaty and rough looking during, and after a run, mosquitoes see you as a delicious dessert.

Dr. Jonathan Day, Ph.D., a mosquito researcher, and professor of medical entomology at the University of Florida shed a little light on why mosquitoes bite and why it itches so much. When a mosquito first bites us it deposits saliva in our skin. The saliva contains proteins that our immune system sees as foreign bodies that need to be attacked. It is the fight between the saliva and our immune system that causes the itch. The reaction is generally worse the first time a specific type of mosquito bites you, says Day. It tends to lessen over time with that species. However, there are 3,000 species of mosquito in the US, so you never know when a new one will make a meal out of you.

Do I Have To Accept Being a Mosquito’s Favorite Meal?

You can’t undo the science, but you can avoid the little pests. Dr. Day’s best suggestion is to do your pre-run stretching and post-run cooldowns inside. Being away from the mosquitoes as much as you can is the best way not to get bitten. You can also choose protective clothing when you run. Your normal repellents aren’t going to work as well since mixing with sweat is likely to dilute them. Choose your run time wisely as well. Most mosquitoes love the hours of dusk and dawn so maybe a lunchtime run is a better choice, but the heat of summer might make that less appealing. When you do get bitten, try alcohol wipes as an immediate healer. Anything that will help to keep your from scratching as that can lead to infection in the bites.

There is also another thing to consider when trying to avoid mosquito bites after a good healthy run — keeping the mosquitoes out of your yard. Being able to come home and relax at the end, be it on the patio or by the pool or simply a good stretch in the driveway would be ideal. Mosquito Squad of Chelmsford & Cambridge can make that possible. We will eliminate 85-90% of the mosquitoes in your yard with our barrier treatment. Not only does it work on contact it continues to work for up to three weeks. We may not be able to keep the mosquitoes from chasing you on your run, but we can stop them in the driveway. Call us today at (978) 381-4028 and let’s create a plan to protect your loved ones from biting bugs.