As the temperature gauge just FLEW up this week, it made me think about the way I adapt my exercise for the heat. I thought I'd share some top tips & things to look out for when it's hotter outside. Yes, these are common sense, but when did that ever prevail..?
- Hydration; if you get nothing else nailed, this is vitally important. Just downing a couple of glasses before your run won't help, ensure you're properly hydrated for a good 48 hours pre-run / workout especially if you're doing it outdoors. You're likely to sweat much more, make sure your body is ready for it. Take water out with you, even if you don't normally, and sip away (it's also nice to drizzle down your front - don't knock it til you've tried it).
- Fuel; if you're anything like me, you don't fancy much more than a nice summer salad for lunch, but don't starve yourself of carbs if you're still planning a run / workout. If you don't fancy hot foods, perhaps include some wild rice or quinoa with your salad to ensure you're . You know it makes sense.
- Sun protection; just because you're moving quickly, doesn't mean you won't still catch the sun. Choose a decent, waterproof sun screen (for the sweating, of course, see above)
- Gear; be realistic about staying as cool as possible. If you're just not a shorts person, invest in a good set of lightweight and a breathable running tights - there are some out there that are a total dream for summer running. Keep colours light, black is NOT your friend on a hot day.
- Head to the gym; if the only time you can work out is when the sun is at its most powerful (between 11-3 in the UK), I'd suggest opting for an indoor workout. Heat exhaustion is no fun. And plus the air-con in the gym is DEEE-lightful.
- A-Tisshhooo; if you're a hayfever sufferer, don't forget to dose up and take tissues! Some believe a bit of vaseline up each nostril helps keep the pollen away, maybe invest in some sports sunglasses too to keep it out of your eyes. Or, head to the pollen-free haven that is the gym. Bliss.
Most importantly, don't take any unnecessary risks in the heat. If you suspect you have any symptoms of heatstroke, ensure you seek medical help