Summer fitness tips: Dos and don'ts to remember while exercising in hot weather
Choosing the right workout gear, snack, knowing when to hydrate and listening to your body is important while exercising during summer season
With the arrival of summer season, there are multiple motivations that inspire people to sweat it out and shed that flab. Experts say that people are more driven to lose inches in summer season as unlike winter when flab can be hidden in layers of woollens, summers are all about beaches and pool parties which requires one to look their best. Exercising in summer season however comes with its own set of rules, especially when one is looking at outdoor workouts. From choosing the right workout gear, snack, knowing when to hydrate to listening to your body is important while exercising during summer season. (Also read: Expert offers summer fitness and workout tips to shed kilos)
Exercise has loads of health benefits and research says it reduces chance of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. It is also good for your brain and a study done at the University of British Columbia found that regular aerobic exercise boosts the size of the hippocampus, the area of the brain involved in learning and verbal memory.
Fitness expert Mukul Nagpaul, Fit India Movement Ambassador and Founder of Pmftraining on dos and don'ts one should keep in mind while exercising in summer season:
Choose the Right apparel
Look for dry fit clothes as they have the ability to dry very quickly which is very helpful while sweating as generally cotton is preferred by a lot of people in summers but cotton is good for casual clothing but not for exercising as cotton absorbs sweat and gets heavy which can be quite uncomfortable
Our bodies are 50-70% water and in summers we need more water to keep the body functioning properly so you need to aim for at least 2-3 litres of water and in you will require more water, depending upon your activity levels and in case you sweat more than you will require more water.
- Don't wait until you are thirsty as this is a sign that you are already dehydrated which will impact your performance in your workouts.
- Don’t forget to drink more water in the hours following your workout. This will help you to avoid some of the more serious effects of dehydration like nausea, vomiting and kidney failure, not to mention that you’ll feel much healthier and more energized.
Listen to your Body
Getting in tune with your body may be the most important of these fitness tips. It's very easy to get carried away if you are playing a sport or during a competition so in case you show any signs of dizziness, extreme thirst, nausea, cramps or dry mouth etc. then immediately stop the activity and look for a cool spot to relax and drink a sports drink. Once you feel better then try to rest or slowly start with the activity but make sure to listen to your body
Don't stay out in the sun for prolonged periods
During summers, the sun’s heat is very intense which can take a toll on your body. It's important to avoid being in the sun from 10 am to 3 pm as sun is the strongest at that time. If at all possible, avoid exercising in direct sunlight. Staying in the shade keeps you cooler and may enable you to complete a more intense workout despite the heat.
Similarly, it may make sense to reserve outdoor workouts for early mornings when temperatures tend to be cooler. This puts you at less risk for heat exhaustion, sun stroke and dehydration.
Don't eat protein before workouts
Lean protein is a great source of energy, but it may not be your best bet before a workout in the heat. Science has shown that eating protein before exercising causes a rise in basal temperature. This means that you’ll feel even hotter if you load up on protein and then exercise in the warmer summer temperatures.
Indulge in protein after your exercise session because this will help you rebuild muscle tissue. Before and during your workout, focus on keeping your temperature lower by drinking water or a slushie made from ice and a sports drink. Researchers have discovered that a lower core body temperature often correlates with improved performance in athletes.