For many of us, excuses not to exercise come pretty easily. So you may have talked yourself into the idea that it’s just too hot to exercise today… tomorrow… this summer. Sorry to rain on your hot idea, but you CAN still exercise in warm temperatures.
It’s true that heat exhaustion and heat stroke are real dangers of exercising in the summer.
Heat exhaustion symptoms include general fatigue, weakness, nausea, dizziness, muscle cramps and an increase in body temperature. Heat stroke signs include temperatures above 104, an inability to sweat, trouble breathing and loss of consciousness.
The key to exercising in the summer is to take precautions and plan to adapt your routine as necessary. Here are five cool tips to staying active.
1. Choose the right time. It seems like a no-brainer, but it’s best to exercise when it’s cooler, such as in the early morning or evening.
2. Keep the water flowing. When exercising in the heat, you’re destined to lose more water. To avoid dehydration, drink 20 ounces of water two hours before exercise. Just before heading into the heat, drink another 8 ounces and continue sipping water every 15-20 minutes during exercise. (Bring a water bottle with you.) Avoid caffeine and alcohol before exercising because they can speed the effects of dehydration. A quality sports drink, such as Innergize!® from Reliv, can help replenish electrolytes and energy, as well as keep you hydrated.
3. Adapt your workout. If the mercury is soaring into the 90s and the humidity is high, realize you’re going to have to slow down or adjust when you do your workout and how hard you push. Stop and rest along the way if you need to. And see #1.
4. Dress for the occasion. Light, breathable clothing that wicks away sweat is your best choice. Light colors that reflect some of the sun’s rays will help keep you cooler, too. Wear shorts to avoid heat build-up from your leg muscles, which are the largest and hardest working on walks, runs or cycling. A ventilated, brimmed hat and sunglasses are helpful, too.
5. File a flight plan. Tell someone where you’re going and how long you’ll be gone. And bring a cell phone if possible. That way if you’re overdoing it, not feeling well or feel like it’s time to quit, help is available.
Now forget your excuses and get moving!