How to Exercise in Extremely Warm Weather

How to Exercise in Extremely Warm Weather

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  1. When the weather warms up, most people like to get outside and enjoy everything the warm temperatures have to offer. Exercising outdoors is a great escape from the boredom and confined spaces in the gym, while also providing the challenges of different types of terrain and beautiful scenery. Taking your exercise routine outdoors can provide a refreshing change, but also offers the challenge of knowing how to exercise safely outside when the weather heats up. The following offers advice on what steps you can take to stay safe when exercising in very warm conditions.

    Time of Day

    On extremely warm days, try to plan your workout for when it is likely to feel the coolest outside. The early morning hours or after the sun sets are great times to exercise outside since these are the times of day when the temperatures are the coolest. Try to avoid exercising during the mid-day hours, since this is the time of day when the temperatures are usually at their highest and the sun is directly overhead. If you must exercise during the mid-day hours, try to limit yourself to areas that are in the shade or in a pool where you are likely to feel cooler despite the very warm temperatures.

    Type of Clothing

    Choose workout clothes that are lightweight and loose fitting, preferably in a light color. This type of clothing will help you to feel cooler during your workout and evaporate sweat. A breathable fabric also will allow air to pass through, which will help to cool you off naturally. Avoid clothing that is dark in color or made of a heavy fabric, since these types of clothing will trap heat and actually make you feel warmer during your workout.

    Drink lots of fluids

    Maintaining proper hydration levels while exercising cannot be stressed enough, especially when exercising during very warm weather. If you exercise in warm weather and are not properly hydrated, you increase your risk of becoming very dehydrated, or even suffer heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Make sure to drink water before and after you exercise so that you do not become dehydrated. Drinking 16 ounces of water two hours before exercise and 4-8 ounces of water for every 20 minutes you are exercising. It is also a good idea to drink a sports drink after exercising in warm weather, since doing so will replace any electrolytes you lost from excessive sweating. Make sure to drink before you feel thirsty. Excessive thirst is often one of the first signs of dehydration, so it is very important to drink plenty of fluids if you are planning on exercising in very warm weather.

    Start gradually

    Until you know how your body will respond to exercising in extremely warm conditions, it is best to start gradually at first. This is especially true if you are used to exercising in a gym which is climate controlled or in conditions that are generally cool. Once you know how you will react to exercising in warm weather you can then build up to workouts that are longer in duration.

    Know the warning signs

    It is important to educate yourself about the signs and symptoms of a variety of heat related illnesses such as heat exhaustion or heat stroke. The warning signs of heat stroke include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, rapid heart rate, increased body temperature and decreased sweating. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include headache, fatigue, nausea, weakness, slowed heartbeat, dizziness or extreme thirst. If you experience any of these symptoms immediately stop exercising and seek shelter in a cool place. You should also drink lots of fluids to prevent any worsening of symptoms. If symptoms do not subside after a short time, it is recommended to seek medical attention as soon as possible.

    Simply because it is warm outside does not mean that you should avoid exercising outdoors. By remembering these easy to follow tips, you can ensure that you are exercising safely and will not be putting yourself in any danger of heat related illness.

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