Summer brings high temperatures and sometimes very uncomfortable conditions for exercise. You don’t have to completely stop your physical activities during the summer months but you should take some precautionary steps to prevent issues such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
If you are exercising outdoors, you should start by checking temperature and humidity before starting your activity. In hot days, wear light clothing as you don’t want your clothes to block the heat from being transferred from our skin surface to the environment. Choose clothing made of light fabrics which will pull sweat away from the skin, instead of absorbing it like cotton.
Hydration is another very important factor for exercise in the summertime, or any other time of the year. Drink plenty of water before, during (if possible) and after your exercise. Taking short water breaks are ideal to rehydrate but try not to extend your break for long periods of time.
In addition, higher intensity exercise in short periods of time are preferred during the summer months as sprint events in hot weather are much less risky than endurance events, when you body loses significant amounts of water and essential minerals. Remember: the higher the heat-index, the slower your pace will be. So, take a step down if you feel it is necessary.
A few other factors may be considered to prevent risk of heat illness. If you had excessive amounts of alcohol prior exercising, inclining the night before, your body might be in need for more water, minerals and electrolytes to prevent issues. You may need to skip your exercise if you have experienced vomiting, diarrhea and any other dehydration process, including excessive sweat, prior your physical activity.
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