Outdoor workouts are one of the top perks of exercising during the summer. While you can!
Sounds of park boot camps, soccer games, hiking and long road-cycling excursions…can you hear the birds singing in the background to the noise of your heavy breathing?? Enjoyable to say the least!
Outdoor Fitness Considerations
Despite the romance you may have with performing outdoor fitness activities, there are many things to consider in the hot temperatures…they could be potentially be dangerous when ill-prepared.
Things such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke are real, potentially harmful, and a truth. So if you don’t want to be rushed to the nearest ER grasping on to life, you just may want to consider what’s below.
Avoid the Hottest Hours of the Day
The hottest hours of the day are between 3:00 pm and 5:00 pm. That though may vary, you’ll have weather watchers say avoid 10am to 2pm as the sun is the strongest then.
Try to time your outdoor fitness workouts to occur in the wee hours of the day or evening as the sun sets. This helps prevent overheating because of the increased temperature in the atmosphere. Besides, it’s much more fun to cycle in a cool breeze than it is in the hot, still air of the mid-afternoon.
Make sure to check the forecast and heat warnings before an outdoor fitness workout as it may be inadvisable to exercise outdoors on those days.
Get Used to It
If you are accustomed to working out indoors where the climate is strictly controlled, then outdoor fitness sessions are bound to be a shock to your system.
Depending on the frequency of your outdoor workouts, your body may need as long as one to two weeks to adjust to the temperature change. In the meantime, it’s a good idea to decrease the duration and intensity of your workouts while you get acclimatised.
Athletes can gradually work back up to the intensity of workout they were doing indoors before trying to push past those levels.
Get and Stay Hydrated
Ok really?? I think you’ve heard this a bazillion times, yet people STILL don’t drink enough water…it’s like the best thing that’s happened to humans lol…
When exercising outdoors in the heat, a condition that causes minor discomfort such as dehydration may become life threatening.
Maintain an appropriate level of hydration by:
- Drinking approximately 20 ounces of water two hours before your outdoor fitness workout.
- Drink another eight-ounce glass just before heading outside, and follow this up with a few sips every 15 to 20 minutes during the workout.
- Don’t forget to keep up with the hydration post workout.
to know whether you are consuming enough water or not, check your urine colour. Is it the colour of lemonade? Anything darker is evidence of dehydration.
Try a Refreshing Spritz of Water
Athletes can bring along a spray bottle, spritzing themselves with cool water every few minutes. This keeps the body’s surface temperature down even in the midst of a gruelling exercise session.
Some athletes swear by dumping a small bucket of water over their heads once or twice while others will wet down a terry hand towel with cool water and wrap the towel around their neck.
Too concerned about immersing yourself in water?? Several companies now make ice or cooling vests that can make a huge difference.
If adverse weather conditions strike, try running in the rain. It’s the easy, no-fuss way to stay cool during outdoor workouts. Just make sure not to slip!
Dress for the Conditions
Light, loose layers generally are advisable for outdoor fitness workouts.
Loose layers tend to move sweat away from the skin instead of trapping it against the body. It may be helpful to avoid cotton, as it tends to soak up sweat and stay wet. Get a more high-tech, moisture-wicking fabric that’s built to help athletes repel heat.
Opt for lighter coloured clothing that is less likely to absorb atmospheric heat.
The Gist of it
Many people spend the winter months longing for a chance to exercise outside. When the opportunity finally comes, it’s best to be prepared for it. Choose to exercise when conditions are cooler and allowing your body time to get acclimatised, you’re increasing your chances for a successful exercise program.
Make sure to stay hydrated, finding innovative ways to cool off and dressing for the heat. It goes a long way in enjoying your outdoor fitness exercises and summer.
This is Grace
Grace from Color & Grace. Based in Troy, Michigan, Grace is a 42 year-old petite woman who loves colours. Born and raised in China, she moved to America for love in 2007. Her day job – teacher. Her dream job – fashion blogger. Make sure to go and check out her blog and leave her a comment on her awesome outfit.
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