Maintaining a summer workout routine is an important part of staying in shape and maintaining your health. There are many exercises you can do during the summer to maintain a healthy lifestyle, but when you’re in Texas facing temperatures in the high 90s, it is imperative that you exercise safely to avoid overheating.
Before we talk about workout ideas, here are some tips to keep in mind for exercising over the summer months:
- Stay hydrated. Not drinking enough fluids during exercise can cause dehydration. Water is your best choice. Make sure the water is cool, but not too cold.
- When your body tells you to stop, stop. If you’re starting to feel light headed, dizzy, nauseous, or feel your heart racing stop working out.
- Keep temperature alerts in mind. If you’d normally do your workout outside, consider exercising indoors to maintain a healthy temperature.
Now that you know what to keep in mind when you’re working out in the heat, here are some exercises you can do that will help keep you in shape and lower your risk of overheating over the summer
- Are you a runner? You don’t have to give up running just because it’s hot! Just adjust your run time to avoid going during the hottest time of the day, which is typically between 11 and 4. Instead, try a morning or evening jog.
- Try yoga. Don’t be fooled by the meditation aspect of yoga. It’s not all deep breathing and easy stretches. Yoga is excellent for core strength, increasing flexibility, and can actually be a rigorous workout if you’re doing it correctly. Try yoga that incorporates Pilates moves. You’ll get a strength-building workout that will help reduce your risk of overheating.
- Give swimming a try. Not only will you get an incredible full body workout, but you’ll also avoid some of the heat by staying in the pool. People often underestimate how effective swimming can be for getting people in shape and helping them stay strong. If you have any doubts, take a good look at Olympic swimmers!
- Do your workout indoors. Find a gym, walk at an air-conditioned mall, or work out in the comfort of your own home. You’ll still sweat in the AC – you’re just at a significantly reduced risk of overheating, so it’s a win-win!Choose a cooler outdoor place to complete your walk, jog, or run. The time of day isn’t the only thing you can control about your exercise regimen. Look for a shady trail or head down to one of the nearby beaches to carry out your routine. Ten degrees might not seem like a lot, but it can make a huge difference if it’s also breezy.
- Dust off your roller skates, find a skating rink, and go skating. Remember how easy skating was when you were a kid? Unless you’ve kept up with it, prepare to be surprised at how difficult it is now that you’re not 10 anymore.
As with any new workout routine, be sure to contact your physician first so he or she can give you the OK and give you personalized tips.
Dr. Benafsha Irani is a board-certified Family Medicine physician who cares for patients at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic – Clear Lake. Her interests include adult medicine, children’s health, women’s health and preventive medicine.