Tips for Safely Exercising in the Heat

1. Avoid the hottest part of the day.  Plan your exercise in the early morning or late afternoon/evening when it is cooler. The hottest part of the day is between 11 am – 3 pm. And remember that humidity can work against your body’s ability to cool the skin since sweat can’t properly evaporate.

2. Drink plenty of fluids. Hydration is essential before before, during and after your workout. You should not wait until you’re thirsty to drink fluids. Read more on Baudry’s blog:  Hydration 101 and What does hydration have to do with your heart

3. Use sunscreen daily. Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 and reapply often. Sunburn decreases your body’s ability to cool itself and increases the risk of skin cancer.

4. Dress appropriately.  Make sure to wear lightweight, well-ventilated clothing to help your body cool. Synthetic fabrics like polyester, nylon, and Lycra easily absorb sweat and allow for evaporation.

5. Know your limits.  Listen to your body and if you begin to feel dizzy, nauseous, or tired, take a break. Allow your body time to rest and refuel between workouts to prevent jeopardizing your fitness and workout goals.

6. Replenish your electrolytes. If you plan to exercise for a couple of hours, you may want to choose a sports drink to replenish electrolytes. These drinks aim to replace salts and minerals as well as fluids. Choose lower-calorie options that contain less sugar.

7. Create a training plan. Plan for a short workout of speed-walking intervals or light jogging. Gradually increase the length and intensity of your workouts as you exercise outdoors more often.


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