Beat the Heat

How to stay cool during hot summer workouts

Working out in the summer can be a miserable, sweat-soaked endeavor.  When it’s a bazillion degrees outside with 500% humidity, sometimes all you can think about is just lying on your couch in your air-conditioned living room, never mind trying to exercise!  But don’t let this intense heat derail your motivation.  With the proper preparation, you can keep your workout game strong throughout the dog days of summer.

  1. STAY HYDRATED
    Hydra-zise! Consume 17–20 ounces of water two hours before exercise and 7–10 ounces of fluid every ten minutes during exercise. But there’s no need to obsess so much that you’re sipping with every step.  Drinking when you feel thirsty is fine.
  2. EAT TO BEAT THE HEAT
    We often crave different kinds of food when it’s 40 degrees versus 14 degrees outside, and there’s some logic to that. Eating certain foods can increase your body temperature, which isn’t ideal if you’re trying to stay cool. Avoid spicy foods that will stimulate heat production.  Also, high-protein foods and anything greasy will be harder to digest, enhancing internal heat production. Stick with easy to digest foods like fruit or yogurt.
  3. DRESS FOR THE WEATHER
    Cotton’s rotten! Workout clothes exist for a reason – regular cotton sweats don’t do the best job at keeping your body comfortable when you’re sweating buckets.  Moisture-wicking fabrics are much better at helping you stay cool and dry.  Lightweight, loose-fitting, minimal clothing can provide a greater skin surface area for heat dissipation.
  4. HEED THE WARNING SIGNS
    Heat exhaustion isn’t a push-through-the -pain situation.  If you start to feel crampy, dizzy, or nauseous, stop immediately and start doing damage control.  Drink some water and remove any unnecessary clothing. You can also mist your skin with water to bring your body temperature down.

Even when the heat index is somewhere between OMG and WTF we can still get a great workout in if we play it smart.

 

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