|Forum Home > General Discussion > The Heat is On|
The hot summer months are no cause to put your exercise routine on the back burner. With a few precautions and minimal changes you can continue to safely exercise throughout the dog days of summer without dropping big bucks on a new gym membership.
Rule #1: Acclimate.
If the temperature is much warmer than the last time you exercised outside, you will need to accustom your body to the difference. Acclimation is not just “getting used to” the temperature increase. During the acclimation process several different physiological changes take place. To name a few of the important changes, the body’s cooling system becomes more efficient starting the sweating process earlier and circulating more blood towards the skin in order to more efficiently cool the body. This process takes 14-21 days. During this time shorten both the duration and intensity of your workout. For example, if you normally run 3 miles a day, try jogging 1.5-2 miles taking walk breaks as needed until your body is acclimated. Then work back up to your “normal” work load.
Rule #2: Reschedule
Early morning and late evening are the coolest and least humid parts of the day. If at all possible schedule your workouts around that time period.
Rule #3 Hydrate:
Sweat rates are much higher in the summer contributing to a greater fluid loss during workouts. Take water with you, and drink according to your thirst. Also, make sure you replace fluids lost. Remember water weight loss is not true weight loss and is detrimental. To get a more accurate estimation of your sweat rate, weigh yourself right before you exercise and again after 30 minutes of exercise. Multiply this by 2 and this is your approximate sweat rate per hour. Try to replace at least 2/3 of this amount. For example if you lost half a pound (sweat rate of 16 oz/hr, you need to drink 10-11 ounces of water for every hour that you exercised. If your exercise exceeded an hour, consider a sports drink.
By following a few simple rules you can continue to enjoy your fitness routine year round!