Summer is just around the corner and with it, a chance to take your workout outside. Even though you’ve probably waited all year for this, there are some important things to prepare for as warm weather brings on its own set of challenges.
These five tips will help keep you safe and ready to smash every outdoor activity, from running and rollerblading to cycling and paddleboarding. Here’s what you should know.
You’ve probably heard this saying a hundred times already, but when it comes to water intake, it’s especially crucial when the outside temperatures rise up. Your rate of perspiration goes up in your body’s attempt to cool itself down even without the added activity factor. So, when you go for your usual five-mile run, you’re sweating more than you did three months ago.
This needs to be taken into account no matter what type of activity you’re participating in, so increasing your water intake should be at the top of your priority.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), dehydration is the primary contributor to heat exhaustion and when working in heat, one should aim for eight fluid ounces of water every 15-20 minutes. When you’re physically active, what you do before, during, and after your workout matters almost equally. Aim to avoid dehydration before your workout, drink during exercise to sustain optimal levels, and definitely replenish after your workout. Additionally, add some electrolytes into your water as perspiration makes you lose precious minerals your body needs to thrive.
Keep your hydration on point!
When you’re heading out for your summer bike ride or having fun kayaking with your friends, it’s important to protect your skin with high-quality sunscreen and protective clothes and accessories such as hats, sunglasses, long-sleeved shirts, or SPF-boosted swimwear.
According to the American Academy of Dermatologists, skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US, with one out of five Americans diagnosed in their lifetime. Protecting your skin has never been more important, and doing so just before you’re about to head to the beach is not enough.
More and more skincare brands are beginning to add SPF to their products in hopes that people would start using sunscreen on the regular, and not just during hot, summer days. Still, the majority of people don’t start protecting their skin before they’re in their swimsuits.
Choose a high-quality, non-toxic skincare cream or spray and rub it in before your outdoor workout as chances are, you’ll quickly catch those sun rays without even noticing it. Add a summer workout hat as your clothing accessory, invest in a good pair of athletic sunglasses, and make sure to reapply your sunscreen after an hour of being in the sun.
When choosing your athletic gear, it’s important to go for fabrics that are breathable, sweat-wicking, and light. That way your skin will be able to breathe and you won’t have sweat dripping all over you. Sweat-wicking materials tend to pull the sweat away from the skin to the exterior of the fabric, making it easier to evaporate.
When it comes to colors, there are some general beliefs and recommendations. White and other bright colors are recommended over black and other darker options since they supposedly reflect the sun and the heat, even though there isn’t much data that supports the theory.
Best leggings for your outdoor workouts.
In the summer, the hottest part of the day tends to be between 10 am and 3 pm, so make sure to fit your workout either before 10 am or after 3 pm, preferably even later. This way, you’ll avoid the heat, but also direct sunlight, helping protect your skin and eyes at the same time.
Additionally, summer mornings and evenings tend to have that nice, chilly quality to them, which is helpful to those who sweat a lot to maintain their fluids. However, it’s still important to properly hydrate, whether you sweat or not.
Don’t overdo it. It’s easy to get carried away on a beautiful summer day, but if you’re feeling dizzy, nauseous, dehydrated, or simply not your best, take it as a sign to take it down a notch or bring your workout indoors.
You can also change the time of your workout or break up a higher-intensity routine into a couple of shorter ones. This will allow your body to rest, replenish whatever it’s missing, and recover so it’s ready to be efficient in every session, and not just the first 15 minutes.
Summer is the time of the year no one wants to be stuck in a smelly gym. Head outside and get your daily dose of fitness in a fun and versatile way. If you’re unsure where to start, check out these six awesome outdoor activities you absolutely need to try this summer.