The Perfect Summertime Workout: How to Exercise in the Heat

I love exercising in the summer heat, with the sun bearing down and blue skies on the horizon. There’s something about the warm weather that really motivates me and gets me on my feet for a workout.

However, the hot weather can sometimes be a burden, and make a work-out seem like an impossible conquest. It’s important to maintain regular exercise even through-out the summer, as fitness gains are very quickly lost and it can be hard to get back into a routine. Following guidelines to ensure a safe and effective workout in the summer heat will help; whether it’s swimming, running, cycling, hiking, or a game of football at the park, we have you covered.

Clothing

Light, breathable sports and fitness clothing will ensure your body does not overheat in the summer sun, whilst also absorbing moisture and giving you a better range of movement. Heavier materials and darker clothing, as well as layers, will just absorb heat and stick to your body, weighing you down and making your workout much more difficult.

Lighter coloured clothing is also a must, as it will keep you cooler and reflect heat away from your body. Investing in a hat to keep the sun out of your eyes and face, as well as a quality pair of sports sunglasses, will prevent you from being blinded by the bright summer sun.

Stay Hydrated

Ensuring you stay hydrated is one of the most important factors of exercising in the heat. If you’re poorly hydrated, your body lacks the crucial electrolytes to keep it functioning properly, without these you’ll be prone to dizziness, nausea, and worse if it transpires into dehydration.

Keep your body hydrated before, during, and after a workout to prevent dehydration. Always take a water bottle with you and keep it full at all times. If you’re a runner, there’s a selection of ergonomic water bottles which can be used with ease during a run.

Schedule

If you want to ensure a safer and more comfortable workout, schedule your exercise so that it coincides with cooler temperatures. Keep yourself updated on local weather forecasts and see when the temperature will be at its lowest. This could be early in the morning or later in the evening. In any case, see if you can work your schedule around these cooler bouts of weather.

Other ways to keep cool include keeping out of the sun and in shadier areas; if this isn’t possible, it may be time to move your workout inside if you’re adamant on avoiding sun. If you’re left with no choice, make sure you invest in waterproof, high factor sunscreen.

Call a Friend

Sometimes in the midst of a workout, it can be harder to hear the signals your body is trying to send you. If you feel dizzy or sick at any point, you should stop immediately and hydrate yourself. In these cases, it’s always good to exercise with a friend so that you can keep an eye on each other.

Not only is it safer to exercise in a larger group, but it is also considered an effective motivator if you have family or friends there to spur to you on. Also, encouraging them to exercise isn’t half bad either!

Be Vigilant

Dehydration, heat-stroke or exhaustion can be very serious. In extreme cases, they’ve led to severe deficiencies within the human body and can result in death. These can be avoided by dressing appropriately and hydrating regularly during a workout.

The symptoms of dehydration or heat-stroke include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Cramps
  • Profuse Sweating
  • Cold Shivers
  • Dizziness
  • Fast or Shallow Breathing

Make sure you recognise your body’s limitations in extreme heat. Also give yourself some time to become acclimatized to the warmer weather before diving straight into a lengthy workout; it is advised to wait at least 4 to 7 days.

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