I love working out outside. The sun on my face. The wind in my hair. Showing off my big muscles to my neighbors. It’s great!
The one thing I do not like about working outside is my vulnerability to heat exhaustion.
Unfortunately, working out in the sun makes me (and you!) more susceptible to heat exhaustion – which can elevate to heat stroke if proper intervention isn’t taken – and that can be a threat to your health!
If you feel the effects of water or salt depletion occurring, find shade, cool temperatures, and hydrate immediately. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include excessive thirst, weakness, headache, nausea, and frequent muscle cramps.
Plus, you can follow these 6 tips to avoid those awful symptoms in the first place! Working out outside is a fantastic way to enjoy the weather – but be sure to do it safely so you can enjoy your sweat sesh!
TIP #1 – Avoid 1-5 PM
The day will be at its HOTTEST between 1 pm and 5 pm.
Schedule your workouts for when it’s cooler outside; particularly, early morning or in the evening. The temperature outside of the 1-5pm can be as much as 5-10 degrees cooler!
But if you are going to workout in the darker hours, be sure to wear reflective clothing or in a well-lit area.
TIP #2 – Dress Appropriately
You might look slick in head-to-toe black lycra… but light-colored clothing can help you stay cool outdoors.
As well, avoid fabrics like cotton. Cotton holds moisture and stretches as you move, which causes friction and blisters.
Look for anti-microbial wools and other wicking fibres in your workout outfits to stay cool in the heat!
TIP #3 – HYDRATE! HYDRATE! HYDRATE!
Drink! Water! Before, during, and after, water is your best friend. If you plan to workout for more than 90 minutes, it is a good idea to have Gatorade or coconut water on hand to replace your electroyltes as you workout, too.
TIP #4 – Hats and Sunscreen
Wear a vented hat or visor made of lightweight, light-colored fabric to reduce the heat’s affect on your body.
Sunscreen, too, pairs great with an outdoor workout! Opt for waterproof and SPF of 50 or higher. Nothing is worse than having sore, sunburnt skin along with your sore muscles!!!
TIP #5 – Cold Shower Cool Down… or Warm Up?!
After your workout, cool down with a cold shower. It sounds uncomfortable… but it will feel great after a hot, intense workout!
As well, before you even START your workout, you can take a cold shower and leave your hair wet to keep you cool during your workout.
Want to save water? Wet your hair under a faucet for the same effect!
TIP #6: Workout According to the Conditions
Some days are too hot to work out outside, and you may have to postpone your exercise schedule.
As well, expect that your body will react differently under different conditions – you may not be able to workout as intensely in the heat. If you feel dizzy or nauseous, give yourself a break.
Another option is to break up your workouts into multiple, smaller sessions throughout the day so you can pace yourself, refuel, and get a great workout without overdoing it!