by Lauren Rae, CPT at TRYM Fitness and Sunwarrior Contributing Writer
With the cool morning air, it has gotten easier to lace up the running shoes and head out for some fresh air. However, the high temperatures show summer is firmly settled in. With the kids out of school you’re probably going to be sending them outside for their own fresh air, making a trip to the local pool, or taking them out and about for some sort of physical activity. Whether you and your family are spending your time indoors or out, it is important to remember how to stay safe and healthy during all summertime fun.
While keeping with your fitness goals might have you venturing out of the local gym and into nature, exercising in the heat can put you at risk for dehydration, heat related exhaustion, and stroke. The best way to acclimate yourself into a warmer environment than you’re used to is to slow down and be aware. Until you’ve adapted to the new conditions, just slow down and assess how your body is reacting before you work at a normal intensity. Choosing the right time of day to workout is also crucial. Be aware of the hottest time of day in your area and be sure to stay inside during that time. Early mornings and late evenings are generally safest. Lastly, by wearing appropriate clothing and accessories you can protect yourself from the heat and utilize your body’s natural cooling system—sweat. Purchasing “heat gear” or sweat-wicking clothing can help you maintain a normal body temperature.
When the body is perspiring, we are actively losing fluids. Staying hydrated can mean the difference between a great workout and a trip to the Emergency Room. Make sure you drink at least 20 ounces of water at least two hours before you go out in the heat and at least 8 ounces of water shortly before you work out. While you’re outside, be sure to sip your water every 15 to 20 minutes.
Replacing electrolytes and minerals into your body after you’ve perspired is also very important. Supplementing with Sunwarrior Immune Shield or Liquid Light is the best way to replace lost electrolytes and minerals naturally and quickly. This complex serves as a catalyst and chelater that delivers trace minerals, various nutrients, and electrolytes freely to the body’s cells. Finally, to keep your water intake interesting, try adding sliced lemon, organic cucumber, or fresh mint leaves for a refreshing new flavor.
Protect Yourself from the Sun
The all-natural, healthy gift from the sun, vitamin D, is undeniably important for its aid in the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorus and has been known to aid in weight loss. While the most natural way to get vitamin D is to expose your bare skin to sunlight, overexposure to the sun’s harmful UV rays can cause irreparable damage to your skin. Sun damage can cause your skin to rapidly age and put you at risk for skin cancer. Here’s the good news, you don’t need to tan or burn to get the amount of vitamin D that your body needs, so slather on the broad spectrum SPF, cover your head, ears and eyes with hats, and wear sunglasses with UVA and UVB protection.
Becoming aware of the signs of heat related injuries can help keep you and your family safe year round. Be aware of signs of heat exhaustion including: general fatigue, weakness, nausea, dizziness, muscle cramps, and an increase in body temperature. Temperatures above 104, an inability to sweat, acute respiratory distress, and loss of consciousness can all be signs of heat stroke, which is much more severe and can lead to death. Always talk to your doctor about issues that surround summertime risks like heated exercise, staying hydrated, and sun exposure.