How to Exercise in the Heat
Summer heat and humidity can put a damper on your workout plans. While moving your workout plans indoors into an air-conditioned space is an option, it’s not the only way to stay cool during warm-weather workouts. Many people can exercise safely outside on hot summer days with some planning and precautions. Read the article below to know more about it.
What effect does heat have on your body?
Exercising in hot weather places additional strain on your body. During exercise, both air temperature and humidity can raise your core body temperature. To aid in cooling, your body sends more blood through your skin. This results in less blood for your muscles, which raises your heart rate. When the humidity level is high, your body experiences additional stress because sweat does not easily evaporate from your skin. When you stop sweating in hot, humid weather, you are more likely to suffer from dehydration, heat exhaustion, or heat stroke.
We have some pointers to help you work out safely even on the hottest summer days:
1. Stay hydrated by drinking the RIGHT fluids | Exercise in the Heat
On a hot day, water is your best friend for staying hydrated; however, if you plan to exercise for more than 60 minutes, you may want to consider sipping on a sports drink. Sports drinks are essential when exercising for extended periods of time, especially in hot weather, because they contain potassium and electrolytes that can rehydrate and replenish your body. High levels of sodium may be beneficial to your body, as sodium is an important component of a hot day. Take no salt tablets. It can increase your chances of dehydration. Drinking extremely cold water may cause stomach cramps. Finally, avoid alcohol, caffeine, and sugary beverages such as soda. These beverages may cause you to lose fluids.
2. Dress in lightweight, breathable clothing | Exercise in the Heat
When getting ready for a workout, wear lightweight, well-ventilated clothing. Synthetic fabrics such as polyester, nylon, and Lycra absorb sweat and allow it to evaporate. Light colours, such as white, reflect heat better than other colours when exercising in the sun. The most important part of the body to keep cool is the head. Wear a hat and soak it in cold water if you are extremely tired. Wearing a hat will not necessarily lower your core temperature, but it may increase your comfort level. Bright colours are good because they reflect the sun and make you more visible to oncoming traffic. Cotton is a lightweight and inexpensive material that can keep you dry.
3. Don’t forget to bring sunscreen | Exercise in the Heat
Nothing is more frustrating than attempting to complete a summer workout with a bad sunburn that makes it difficult to move. Slathering on sunscreen will help to prevent sunburn. Choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 50 that is also water-resistant so that it does not come off when you start sweating. Apply sunscreen every 2 hours or after sweating. Sunburn reduces your body’s ability to cool itself and increases your risk of developing skin cancer.
4. Rehydrate your electrolytes | Exercise in the Heat
If you plan on exercising for several hours, you should drink a sports drink to replenish electrolytes. These beverages are intended to replace salts, minerals, and fluids. Choose lower-calorie, sugar-free alternatives.
Listen to your body, and if you start feeling dizzy, nauseous, or tired, take a break. Taking some time off to rest is preferable to overdoing your workout and becoming ill or injured, forcing you to stop working out entirely. If the summer heat makes your standard high-intensity workout too difficult, break it up into multiple smaller workouts throughout the day. This gives your body a chance to rest and refuel without jeopardising your fitness and workout goals.