When the summer season hits, many people choose to take advantage of the sunshine by switching from their usual indoor workout to the great outdoors. While it’s good to make the most of being in the sun – since it’s a strong source of vitamin D – working out in the heat can make us dehydrated and tired sooner than when we exercise indoors.
It’s important, therefore, to look after our bodies when we keep fit in the summer. Why not follow these handy tips to ensure you workout safely in the sun?
Exercising in the heat can cause symptoms such as dizziness, stomach cramps and headaches. What’s more, it causes our body temperature to rise, which can lead to problems like heat stroke.
To avoid suffering from any of these, make sure you keep hydrated by drinking water before, during and after your workout. Don’t overdo it, though, since drinking too much can actually lead to overhydration.
To be safe, drink the recommended eight to ten ounces of water for every 15 to 20 minutes of activity.
Wear lightweight clothing
When you exercise in hot weather, it’s a good idea to wear lightweight, breathable clothing. This will help to pull moisture away from your skin so your body feels cooler.
You may also find that wearing a hat, such as a cap with a sun visor, will keep the sun off from your face and help you to cool down.
Avoid the hottest time of day
Midday is normally when the sun is at its hottest, so try to avoid exercising at this time. Instead, rise early in morning just as the sun is coming up and head outside to work out, or just as the sun is setting in the evening.
Slow down your pace
Exercising in the sun is very different to working out indoors. Therefore, you may wish to change your normal workout routine slightly.
If you’re planning to head out on a 5-mile run for example, run at a slower, steadier pace than you would inside. Or perhaps switch your routine to interval training, since this allows you to combine high-intensity exercises with short, slower bursts.
Remember, it’s perfectly okay to stop for a break!
Exercise in the coolest places
If you do feel that it’s getting too hot during your workout, find a cool place to exercise. Parks have breezy areas with plenty of shade that are significantly cooler than the sunny streets nearby.
If you do begin to feel too hot though, take a break and sit in the shade or return indoors to cool down. The key is to not overdo it.