5 Helpful Tips for Exercising in Summer Heat
When the temperature reaches its peak, exercising outside can be a dangerous and a threat to your health. When the summer heat gets almost unbearable, you need to protect yourself from the hot weather with sunscreen, wear appropriate clothing for exercising, drink enough fluids and stay home when it is too hot outside.
How the summer heat affects your body?
Exercising when the weather is hot, creates more stress on your body and your lungs. Exercising, just by itself, increases your body temperature and makes your lungs and heart to work harder.
When your body gets warmer, more blood starts to circulate through your body, particularly your skin. And because there’s a little less blood in your muscles, your heart rhythm accelerates. If the air humidity is high, your body will experience even more stress. When the air is damp, your body won’t be able to sweat properly and that will increase your body temperature even more.
Under normal circumstances, your skin, blood vessels and breathing can easily adapt to the summer heat But when it’s too hot or there’s high air humidity, these protective systems can’t function properly. The result can be exhaustion or something worse like stroke or heart attack.
5 Helpful tips for exercising in summer heat
To maintain your body functioning normally, while exercising in summer heat, you need to follow these 5 helpful tips:
Start slowly. If you are accustomed to exercising indoors where you have an air conditioner or in a colder weather, start your workout slowly. As your body adjusts to the hot temperature, gradually increase the duration and intensity of your workout.
Drink more fluids. Drink enough fluids while exercising, even if you don’t feel thirsty. If you plan to exercise for a longer period of time or you plan to do harder exercises, it isn’t a bad idea to also drink some sports drinks. These drinks will restore the sodium and potassium levels in your body, that are lost by sweating.
Wear appropriate clothes. Pick clothes that are easy to wear, allowing your body to sweat. The material from which the clothes are made must be light and breathable if you want to be active when temperatures are high. Usually cotton clothes will let the air through them and your body will be able to cool faster. Avoid choosing clothes in dark colors that absorb heat.
Avoid exercising at noon. Try to exercise in the morning or evening when the temperatures are lower and the air is cooler. If you can, exercise under a deep shade or somewhere cool.
Use sunscreen. Sunburns will reduce the ability of your body to cool itself. When your skin is sunburned it radiates heat which makes you feel uncomfortable and unable to cool your body properly.
When to stop exercising?
Exercising in summer heat can be exhausting. Stop exercising and go somewhere cool, if you have these symptoms:
- muscle cramps
- nausea or vomiting
- rapid heart rate
Physical activity is very important, but don’t allow the exercising in summer heat to be a threat to your health.