Working out regularly is excellent for the body! However, working out during the summer months can be dangerous due to the intense heat and humidity levels. If you enjoy doing activities outdoors, don’t let the summer weather stop you! Here are some tips to staying safe and cool this summer.
1 Wear loose-fitting, lightweight clothing. Wearing tight and heavy clothing stops heat from escaping your body and is instead trapped within your clothing. Wearing loose-fitting and lightweight clothing allows heat to leave and cool air to take its place. Proper ventilation is key to keeping your body constantly cool.
2 Protect against sunburn. Don’t let yourself skip out on the sunscreen! Being sunburned affects your body’s ability to cool itself down in the damaged areas. Protect yourself outdoors with a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses and use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Apply sunscreen generously, and reapply every two hours — or more often if you’re swimming or sweating.
3 Drink plenty of fluids. Keeping your body hydrated is critical to staying safe no matter what sort of activity you’re doing! Being hydrated allows your body to sweat and maintain a normal body temperature. Keeping the body hydrated helps the heart more efficiently pump blood through the blood vessels to muscles in your body. Also, it helps the muscles work more efficiently by providing the necessary oxygen to function. Here is some additional information on hydration and the effects on your body.
4 Take extra precautions with certain medications. Being well informed is pretty important, especially when taking prescribed drugs. Knowing the side effects and how it affects you as an individual is crucial and should be apparent to you before you start any physical activity of any kind. Some medications may cause you to feel nauseous or drowsy and may affect your performance but can also become deadly if used incorrectly. As with any medication, it is also equally important to stay well hydrated when under the influence of any prescription drugs.
5 Never leave anyone in a parked car. Before and after your workouts, be sure to stay out of the sun when inside a parked car. It may seem like common sense, but it can be quickly forgotten how dangerously hot a parked car can become. “Children have died in cars with the temperature as low as 63 degrees. The car becomes a greenhouse. At 70 degrees on a sunny day, after a half hour, the temperature inside a car is 104 degrees. After an hour, it can reach 113 degrees” says Jan Null, adjunct professor at San Francisco State University. When parked in the sun, the temperature in your car can rise 20 degrees Fahrenheit in 10 minutes.
6 Take it easy during the hottest parts of the day. If you can’t avoid strenuous activity in hot weather, drink fluids and frequently rest in a cool spot. Try to schedule exercise or physical labor for cooler parts of the day, such as early morning or evening. Heatstroke is a very real threat so be sure to take a break if you ever feel dizzy, thirsty, or when you feel yourself overheating.
The best way to end a good workout in the heat and take a relaxing break is to get a massage! If you would like more information on massages or would like to order a massage on-the-go, check out the rest of FeelXtra’s website.
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