Summer is here! While this is a great season, the only downside is the heat, especially if you’re training outdoors! When training in the heat, it’s vital to keep yourself cool to regulate your body’s core temperature. Too high of a body temperature and you may start experiencing fatigue, dizziness, exhaustion and heat strokes – all of which can reduce your exercise performance and recovery and even put you in fatal situations.
Experiencing symptoms of training in the heat may be caused by a combination of things: training in a hot environment, clothing, intense exercise, dehydration, too much body fat and/or a lack of fitness. So, what are some things you can do to avoid this during training?
1. Stay cool
It’s important to not only take regular breaks during outdoor training sessions, but take those breaks in the shade! Keep yourself cool by also splashing water on your face and neck, while also bringing a fan (if possible) to get an added cooling effect.
2. Keep hydrating
Before, during and after a workout make sure to hydrate with water and/or a sports drink. Sports drinks, in this case, are an excellent option as you will benefit from the added sugar to enhance mental and physical performance during training, as well as electrolytes to replenish lost fluids and electrolytes.
Eating fluid-rich fruits (such as oranges or watermelons) after training are excellent way to refuel and rehydrate the muscles
Whether you are participating in the sport that requires a lot of clothing (i.e. American Football) or are simply training for fun in the outdoors, it’s important to minimize clothing as much as possible. There are many sport apparel companies that offer climate-cooling wear, so it would be a good idea to invest in such clothing in the summer to keep you cool during training.
4. Take it easy
Don’t go all out from the beginning! Start training at a low intensity and then build as you get used to training in the heat. As soon as you feel any symptom such as fatigue or dizziness, take a break or stop training completely.
There are a lot of factors that go into experiencing symptoms of training in the heat. It’s of utmost important to make sure you are preparing yourself well before, during and after training to avoid such symptoms. If you will be training outdoors, it’s a good idea to train with someone else in the case of any emergency.