Tips for Keeping Cool During Summer Workouts
by Evelyn Valdez·
Hot weather can be fun when you’re prepared for it, especially during the summer when you have a bunch of plans prepared. Maybe you’re planning a trip to the beach with your family, having poolside parties with your friends, or simply enjoying a nice sunbath in your backyard.
However, when it comes to working out in the heat of the summer, things can go a little differently. Your body produces heat when you’re exercising, meaning that your body temperature is already high, so pairing that with the summer heat can get risky if you don’t take the right precautions!
To help you stay safe from the heat and humidity during your summer workouts, we’ve prepared a list of tips that you can follow to make sure you’re getting the most out of your active summer without falling victim to heat exhaustion.
Learn to identify signs of heat exhaustion
First things first, if you want to ensure a safe summer while staying active, you need to know how to identify the symptoms of heat exhaustion. You never think it’s going to happen to you until it actually does, and exercising in the heat makes it a lot more likely, so keep an eye out for any of these symptoms:
- Muscle cramping
- Heavy sweating
If you notice that you’re feeling unwell and showing these signs of a heat-related illness during your summer workouts, then move to a cooler place where you can rest and drink plenty of water. When untreated, heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, so make sure you’re taking good care of yourself at all times!
Stick to lightweight clothing
When it comes to working out in hot weather, make sure you’re picking breathable clothes such as cotton or synthetic fabrics that allow you to move freely while letting the hot air flow around to avoid risking heat exhaustion.
This is because, as we mentioned earlier, your body produces heat when you’re working out, so you want to make sure that the hot air doesn’t get trapped around your body while it’s already hot and humid out. Additionally, make sure to pick light colors instead of dark so you can reflect the sun rays and keep more of the heat away!
Give water sports a try
What better way to stay cool during the summer than being in the water? If you have a pool that you can use, don’t be afraid to jump in it and make a workout out of it. You can bring friends for a group session or simply put some music on your speakers and have a workout by yourself!
You can stick to traditional water sports such as swimming if what you want is a straightforward calorie-burning workout, or try something more challenging such as stand-up paddleboarding which not only burns calories but also helps you tone your muscles since you need to keep your balance on the board. Your choice!
Replenish your body with more than water
When that mid-summer heat arrives and you start sweating bullets during your workouts, water won’t be enough to keep you properly hydrated! This is because you sweat a lot more when exercising in hot weather, meaning that you lose even more electrolytes through sweat than usual.
Always have your shaker bottle filled with water, electrolytes, or BCAA's to help you stay hydrated! Water is enough but with excessive heat and sweat, adding electrolytes or BCAA's will help give you a boost and replenish yourself during and after each summer workout. Your body will definitely thank you for it!
Prioritize indoor workouts
If you’re a fan of outdoor workouts, you might need to switch things up when summer arrives. This isn’t to say that you should avoid outdoor workouts completely, but prioritizing indoor workouts will help keep your body temperature at a manageable level, not only minimizing the risk of heat exhaustion but also saving up much-needed energy.
You can work out indoors at home or at your local gym with the AC on full blast to avoid the outside heat, but if you truly miss the fresh air, then try your best to stay in the shade where the sun can’t reach you directly! This way you can still get a nice workout without all the excessive sweating and possible sunburns.
Use enough sun protection
Speaking of sunburns, you’ll want to make sure that you’re using plenty of sunscreen during your outdoor workouts to protect your skin. In fact, wearing sunscreen is recommended even if you’re not going outside, but it’s especially crucial if you’ll be working out under the scorching sun!
Your skin helps regulate your body temperature, and extra hot skin will have a hard time doing that. Not to mention those annoying sunburns that don’t even let you sleep at night! Ideally, you should use a 15 SPF sunscreen or higher, and reapply every two hours for maximum coverage and protection.
Avoid working out at noon
Between the hours of 10AM and 3PM is when the sun is higher up in the sky, making the air hotter and your chances of suffering from heat exhaustion a lot more likely. To decrease your risk, move your workout schedule around and exercise earlier in the morning when the air is still cool out, or later in the evening when the sun has set.
We know it’s not possible for everyone to change their schedule because of school, work, or other responsibilities, but if you can do it, then give it a try – you’ll thank yourself later! And if you choose to keep working out around noon, make an effort to do it indoors instead of outside to avoid the high temperatures and keep your body safe.
Stay safe while active this upcoming summer
Remember, safety should always come first when it comes to fitness. If you have body goals that you want to achieve in time for summer, keep working hard but make sure to always listen to your body. You don’t want to push it too far and risk crashing down due to heat exhaustion, so take care!
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