Summertime means beach days, picnics, and outdoor workouts.
If you choose to bring your gym bag and Workout Wedge out to the park or backyard this summer, you should be prepared. The sun coming up early and going down late gives you an even greater opportunity to get your workout in – but there are some things you should keep in mind to beat the heat:
Dehydration is always bad news – not just during the summer. For athletes taking their training outdoors however, dehydration becomes way easier. The more the temperature rises, the more fluids you’re bound to lose while exercising. An adequate amount of water varies for everyone and depends on your fitness level, body composition, and workout intensity. There’s no such thing as too much water (unless you’re drinking multiple gallons over the course of your workout), so it’s better to stay on the safe side. When your body is happily hydrated during your outdoor workouts, your heart pumps easier and you perform better.
WebMD recommends the following water intake for your outdoor workouts:
- One to two hours before you workout, drink 15 to 20 ounces of water
- 15 minutes before you begin, drink between 8 and 10 ounces of water
- During your workout, drink another 8 ounces every 15 minutes
Avoid peak heat
During summertime, it’s not the wisest decision to exercise outdoors at noon. To avoid dehydration and its consequences, try to find shade if possible. If not, research ahead of time and find out the coolest time during the day, like the morning or early evening. That way, it’s just sunny enough to enjoy the outdoors and cool enough to get an effective workout in. The little shady spot could make the biggest difference of even 10 degrees. Another thing to keep in mind is your fitness level. Seasoned athletes are more acclimated to heat than beginners, so be cautious. Extreme heat puts an extra deal of stress on your body, which can put a damper on your outdoor workouts.
Listen to warning signs
The combination of too much heat and humidity can lead to heat-related illnesses in some cases. Some examples being heat cramps, exhaustion, and even heat stroke. Your body will naturally prevent these illnesses with its built-in cooling system. However, extreme conditions and prolonged exposure can take its toll on this system.
Here are some warning signs of heat-related illnesses, according to Mayo Clinic:
- Muscle cramps
- Nausea + vomiting
- Excessive sweating
- Dizziness + lightheadedness
- Low blood pressure
- Increased heart rate
- Visual problems
If you’re experiencing any of these, drink water, take a break, or lower your intensity.
Adjust your outdoor workouts
Work hard, but not too hard. If the sun is particularly beaming one day, consider shortening your workout. You can still get in a challenging workout by splitting it into a series of 20-minute sessions. There’s no need to push on for over an hour. Do what you can, how you can, when you can. Learn and follow your body’s cues. You could always finish your workout another time of the day for that extra metabolism boost. Not only should you adjust the length, you should consider adjusting the intensity. If your body isn’t up for your usual high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that day, pick up your Stretch Wedges and explore some yoga poses instead.
Wear the right clothes
Put away your long-sleeved tracksuit and let your skin breathe. Your clothing choice can either battle or complement your cooling system. The lighter the material, the more moisture the clothing “wicks.” Products like cotton and linen are good at absorbing most perspiration, but the sweat stays on the shirt and can lead to some strange looks. The smarter choice would be wicking polyester clothes. As opposed to cotton and regular polyester, wicking fabrics designed specifically for exercise allow moisture to evaporate from your clothing. This comes in handy during your workout, since your body can beat the heat quicker and easier.
Whenever you take to the great outdoors this summer for your workout, try out some Wedge Effect products to amplify your session. With a non-slip bottom, you can take your Stretch Wedges, Workout Wedges, or Wedge Ledges anywhere outdoors (or indoors) for extra muscle activation. Check out 100 Ways to Wedge for your next outdoor workout.