Summer is the perfect time to go outside and have fun. There are so many outdoor activities to choose from. Everything is more fun outside, whether you’re paddleboarding, golfing, swimming, running or cycling.
BUT – truth be told … I actually don’t like the heat of summer one bit. Not one single bit. I sweat when it is 10 below …. So when it hits above 70 – uggg ….. Plus, the summer heat can be a problem if you’re not careful, particularly in areas with extreme heat and humidity.
However, I have learned how to stay hydrated and how to maintain the necessary electrolytes and salt when exercising (or just standing) outside. When you sweat, your body loses not only water, but electrolytes and salt, too. This delicate balance of water and electrolytes is crucial to keep your body functioning properly.
If you don’t drink enough water, you can get dehydrated and suffer from light-headedness and nausea. However, if you drink too much water without replenishing your electrolytes, you can experience hyponatremia. This can lead to confusion, nausea and muscle cramps. (Ok …. Or more serious …. But I am assuming you are not going there!)
Here are some things to think about when exercising outside:
- The time of day is important.Unless you are training for an event that takes place in the daytime heat, avoid exercising from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It’s the hottest part of day. Generally, the early morning is the best time to workout, especially if it’s going to be scorcher that day.
- Wear loose, light-colored.The lighter color will help reflect heat, and cotton material will help the evaporation of sweat. You may also want to try specially designed, “hi-tech” running shirts and shorts. They are often made from material meant to keep you cool.
- Sunscreen is a must.It’s important to protect your skin. You can get burned and suffer sun damage to your skin even on cloudy days.
- Stay hydrated. Before you go out, drink a glass or two of water. Carry a bottle of water or even a hydration pack. CamelBak is my favorite! Take a drink every 15 minutes, even when you’re not thirsty. I actually set my watch to beep every 15 minutes to ensure that I don’t forget! When you’re done with your workout, have a few more glasses of water.
- Replenish your electrolyte and salt intake while exercising. There are plenty of different options – but the Vega Sport Electrolyte Hydrator is my favorite.
- If you can, choose shaded trails or pathways that keep you out of the sun.
- Check the weather forecastbefore you start your workout. If there’s a heat advisory, meaning high ozone and air pollution, you might want to take your workout indoors. These pollutants can damage your lungs.
- Most importantly, listen to your body.Stop immediately if you’re feeling dizzy, faint or nauseous.
Of course it is important to continue to move your body … but do it safely! And if you need to go indoors – check out this treadmill workout!
Move your body, put good things in and ENJOY every day!