It’s hot. Today, it’s hot here in the middle part of the U.S. It’s Carmex-melting-in-your-car hot. It’s thigh sweat hot.
And I know how hot it is, because one of my coworkers, who came in at noon today, told me so.
I can see through our sheer curtains to an idea of sunshine, but mostly I’m on the edge of chilly in our air conditioned building, with my sluggish metabolism, my low body temperature.
I can endure and enjoy much hotter temperatures and more prolonged exposure to them than I could when I was 100 lbs. heavier. My body is still working to adjust to life without a lot of extra insulation, taking its time acclimating. I freeze in cold temperatures now, almost regardless of the number of layers I wear.
But hot is hot, and even hotter when you want to exercise vigorously outdoors. You sweat more, chafe more, risk heat stroke much more.
There are things we can do, though, to keep ourselves comfortable while exercising in the heat. Here are some things to consider:
*Try shorter workouts while you’re acclimating to the heat.
*Avoid working out at the hottest part of the day. Try early morning or just-before-sundown workouts.
*Especially if you live in an air conditioned house, start slowly and gradually increase your exertion to give your body a chance to start sweating. Sweat is good, and important here.
*Carry a water bottle and use it to wet your head and neck and exposed skin while you work out.
*Use a cooling neckband or water pack to help transfer body heat away from your body.
*Use the fiber technologies, like coolmax running and workout gear, which assists your body in dissipating heat.
*Take breaks in your workout to let your heart rate recover and check for signs of heat stroke -dizziness, excessive muscle cramping, confusion, headaches high body temperature. (Shoot, that sounds like a regular workout to me!) If you’re really challenging your body, you might want to bring along an electronic thermometer to check your body temp. Seriously.
*Before, during, after: Drink water.
*If it’s over 90 degrees, try a pool or a gym.
Keep your cool,