We all know that when summer comes around, people tend to move their workouts outside, where they can enjoy the sun and fresh air. But with our summers getting hotter and hotter, you might start to reconsider this decision. Exercising in the heat can have its drawbacks, as well as being dangerous for your health if you overdo it. But there are ways around this, so here are the best ways to work out in the heat and some alternatives if it’s not for you.
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- Tips for Exercising in the Heat
Tips for Exercising in the Heat
If you’ve decided you would like to take your workout into the sunny outdoors, there are a number of things to do to make sure you stay as safe and healthy as possible. Remember! Exercising outdoors during Summer can put you at risk of heatstroke. Make sure to be aware of how long you’ve been outside and in the sun, and make sure you don’t stay out too long.
1. Stay Cool
Maybe one of the most obvious things for exercising in the heat, but staying cool is vital to being able to do a good workout. There are a number of ways to do this. Firstly, you could have a cold shower before and after exercising to keep your temperature down. Leaving your hair wet instead of drying it can be a good way to keep your head and neck cool as well.
Or you could always grab yourself a cooling towel. These are designed to stay cool for long periods of time; just run them under the tap and use them wherever it’s needed. They come in a clip-on container if you want to keep them somewhere before using them, and then you can wash and reuse them as often as you like. Laying one around your neck and shoulder whilst running or hiking can be a great way to get some much-needed relief from the heat.
2. Keep Hydrated
Keeping hydrated is vital when it comes to working out, especially if you’re out in the heat. Not only will you be sweating from the exercise, but you’ll sweat more because of the heat, meaning you be losing twice as much as usual. Staying hydrated with cooled water or energy drinks is the best way to keep yourself from feeling unwell.
Water and energy drinks will make sure you top up all of the liquids and electrolytes that you’re sweating out, preventing you from feeling sick or passing out from the heat.
3. Choose the Right Clothing
Clothing can make or break a workout. When it comes to exercising during the summer, especially when the temperatures are high, loose, light-coloured clothing is the best bet. Dark clothing is definitely going to keep you warmer, whereas light clothing reflects the light away, so this will help you stay as cool as possible. Loose clothing helps for the same reason. Having tight clothing on can cause you to sweat more, keeping you wet and warm. Choosing the opposite means you will stay as cool and dry as you can.
4. Wear Suncream
Suncream is a no-brainer when the sun is shining. Preferrable water-proof for working out to prevent sweating it off. Using suncream will prevent you from burning in the sun and reduce the risk of heat stroke, from sunburn at least.
5. Check the Weather
Finally, you can check the weather throughout the week. Working out at the coolest times of the day will be the safest. Early in the morning or late evening will be the best times to look at, but checking the weather will tell you when the coolest time of day will be.
Alternative Ways to Workout
The summer weather and long days often mean that people don’t bother with things like home gyms and equipment. When shopping, the thought that you’ll only use them for half of the year can be off-putting. But with the summers becoming hotter and hotter, you might find a home gym perfect for those heat wave days as well as those cold winter days. Having somewhere indoors, out of direct sunlight, that you can air condition or at least keep cool can be perfect for working out during heatwaves.
If you still want to exercise outdoors, water sports could be ideal. You could try outdoor swimming or kayaking or head to the beach for some paddleboarding or surfing. The water will keep you cool whilst you exercise; just be aware to keep your workouts shorter to prevent sunburn or heatstroke.
Low Impact Exercise
Low-impact exercises like yoga or pilates can be an ideal way of working out in the heat and enjoying the sun without overdoing it. You can put yourself in the shade or out of direct sunlight, and whilst still a solid workout, you’re less likely to exert yourself as much.
So if you want to work out in the summer heat, just be sure to know your limits. Don’t push yourself too far and make yourself unwell just for a bit of exercise. And if it’s just too warm for you, take a rest day. Listen to your body, and if you start to feel dizzy, nauseous, tired or too hot, head back inside and get some rest.
Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. Exercise.co.uk assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.
If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.