Taking the right safety precautions and being aware of your surroundings can help you get a safe, enjoyable workout under the summer sun. Here are some general fitness tips for everyone to keep in mind when the weather gets hot.
Athletic performance training in the hot weather can seem highly daunting at first, but your body can get acclimated if you gradually ease yourself into it. It usually takes about two weeks of regular exposure (exercising outside in the heat) for your risk of heat-related injury to go down. Start with about 15 minutes of exercise in the morning (to avoid the sun’s height) and gradually increase the length and intensity of your workout each day. By the end of the second week, your body should be far more comfortable working out in the heat.
Any personal trainer will tell you to drink a lot of water when you exercise, especially during the summer. Being even mildly dehydrated can significantly increase your risk of heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Health experts recommend drinking about half your body weight in water during the day. During workouts, you should be drinking about 32 ounces of water every hour to ensure proper hydration and avoid heat-related issues.
Don’t Skimp on Salt
It may sound counterintuitive, but letting your salt levels get too low can leave you more vulnerable to dehydration and heat-related issues. During hot weather workouts, your body is continually losing sodium through sweat, which can deplete your electrolyte levels and lead to dangerous exhaustion. Some healthy snacks that contain sodium include yogurt, olives, nuts, and seeds. Snacks like these can keep electrolyte levels up and provide you with energy throughout your day.
When you’re working out in the heat, letting your body temperature get too high can be very dangerous. Precooling before your workout can help you manage your internal temperature and avoid issues. A cold shower or an ice-cold drink before your workout can help keep your temperature down and prevent overheating or excess sweating.
Working out in hot weather presents unique challenges. However, with the right precautions in place, you can have healthy workouts all summer long. Contact Horsham Athletic Club for more information on summer fitness!