Working out in the summer can be an entirely different experience to what you’re used to in the cooler months. With temperatures soaring it can be harder to move, and dehydration can set in quickly. If precautions aren’t taken during summer workouts, you can find yourself experiencing side effects such as dizziness, nausea and stomach cramps. To help prevent this from happening to you follow our tips below.
Time of day
When working out in the summer, it is best to do so at the coolest periods in the day. Cooler times tend to be first thing in the morning before the sun has properly risen, and in the evenings when it is beginning to set. Exercising at these times ensures that you do not expose your body to the most extreme temperatures allowing it to stay cool and not overheat. If it is not possible to exercise at these times and you must workout through the day, doing so in the house and shaded areas is advisable.
Keeping hydrated is essential for getting through any workout and even more so when it is hot outside. When the body is hot, it sweats to help it cool down. As a result, water is lost, that needs to be replaced. Drinking plenty of water is therefore paramount when exercising. Water should be drunk before during and after a workout. Drinking plenty throughout the day ensures that you are hydrated and drinking throughout an exercise routine ensures that you are replacing what is lost. You should drink even if you don’t feel thirsty. Feeling thirsty is your body’s way of telling you that you are already dehydrated. Water is the best liquid you can have and should not be substituted for hot drinks or energy drinks.
Opt for the shade
Finding a shaded place to exercise can make all the difference to your summer workouts. Running trails in the woods, for example, provides protection from the sun. It can be 10 or more degrees cooler in the shade meaning the body does not get hot as quickly. Exercising by the coast can also be beneficial as you will benefit from a sea breeze.
If being outside in the sun seems too much or you really want to push yourself choosing to be indoors could be the right option for you. Gyms provide shelter from the sun and typically have air conditioning to keep you cool. If a gym membership isn’t for you though, why not go for a workout in the comfort of your own home? It’s the perfect opportunity to make the most of your workout DVDs or to see how many times you can run up and down the stairs.
Choose the right clothes
Having the right workout clothes can make all the difference to your workouts. If you are not comfortable with what you’re wearing your already off to a bad start in your workout. Loose and baggy clothes may seem like your best bet but when you’re hot and sweaty and prone to chaffing they can make the situation worse for you. On the other hand, tight clothing may seem restricting and undesirable in the hot weather. Wicking clothing is often the best form of dress to go for in the summer. It is lightweight and breathable making sure you are both comfortable and relaxed. Wicking clothing is renowned for its ability to pull moisture away from the skin to keep you as fresh as possible.
Tailor your workout to the weather conditions
It’s a good idea to customise your workouts to the current weather conditions. If for example, it is an unusually hot day, you may want to do lighter cardio activities. Cycling can be an excellent alternative to running and so can swimming. When the weather is slightly cooler, you can look at doing a more strenuous workout routine without the worry of becoming too hot.
Slow it down
If you are used to exercising and like to get a certain amount in each day the summer sun can make this difficult. By slowing down your pace or splitting your workout into intervals throughout the day, you can still achieve this without exhausting yourself. Taking breaks isn’t something to be ashamed of and should be welcomed in hot weather.
A cold shower never hurt anyone
Taking a cold shower before you workout can work wonders for your core temperature. The cold water will help to cool you down leaving you feeling refreshed before you begin your exercise routine. If you wash your hair leaving it wet while you exercise will also be beneficial. The water dripping from your hair and over your face will leave you feeling refreshed
Don’t forget your suncream
Ensuring that you are properly protected from the sun is essential for your health. Wearing suncream will protect you from being burned which can be extremely painful if burnt badly. Wearing a hat will also help to keep you safe and will keep the sun directly off your face.