Are you ready to take your workouts outdoors for a bit of fresh air? While exercising outside can be highly rewarding and therapeutic, excessive outdoor heat can wreak havoc on your body if you’re not careful. Curious about how you can stay safe while getting the most out of your outdoor workouts? Take a look at this brief guide for a few helpful tips.
If you plan to exercise outdoors, try to avoid the midday heat by planning appropriately. Exercising outdoors during the morning, late afternoon and early evening will help you stay cool because the sun is not directly overhead. You should also take a look at the local weather forecast before you head out the door. If the temperature or humidity is greater than 75 percent, consider taking your workout indoors to avoid possible heat-related health complications.
Wear Appropriate Attire
Heat-related illness sets in when your body temperature rises beyond its normal range. Fortunately, specially designed exercise apparel helps wick sweat and heat from your body, resulting in a more comfortable temperature while exercising. Lightweight, loose-fitting clothing allows sweat to evaporate from your skin, which will also help keep you cool. Avoid wearing dark clothing while exercising outdoors as dark colors tend to absorb heat and trap it against your skin.
When exercising outdoors in the heat, it is critical that you pay close attention to signs that your body may be suffering from a heat-related illness. According to GBW Law, many people do not realize the devastating effects of heatstroke and continue their physical activity despite the development of hazardous symptoms. Heatstroke occurs when the body becomes overheated and dehydrated from prolonged exposure to excessive heat.
Common symptoms of this dangerous condition include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Rapid breathing
- High body temperature
- Dizziness, confusion and mood changes
- Racing heart
To avoid heatstroke, it is critical that you keep yourself properly hydrated. Dehydration and water intake are closely related, so you should increase your water consumption when exercising in the heat, especially if you are prone to considerable perspiration. Most experts recommend a water intake of at least 64 ounces per day. If you sweat excessively, you’ll require more water to make up for perspiration-related fluid loss.
If you typically exercise indoors or in cooler outdoor environments, it may take your body some time to acclimate to warmer outdoor temperatures. Rather than performing your normal exercise routine, take it easy when you begin exercising in the heat. When you’re getting started, try cutting your workout duration in half. As you gradually adjust to the change in temperature, slowly increase your time spent outside. Staying safe and healthy when exercising in the heat isn’t difficult. It just requires constant diligence. Even the most seasoned athlete can experience heat-related illness despite intense training and physical adaptations. However, with attentiveness and the appropriate preparation, you can enjoy daily outdoor exercise without fear of heat-related health damage.