Now that the summer is upon us, the heat is no excuse not to get your cardio in! My uncle told me more than 30 years ago, “Don’t let the heat intimidate you!” He was a little crazy, but I’ve always followed that advice. However, we must be reasonable about it.
Years ago, I would always get on my friends and family for complaining about the heat. I figured they were just lazy and would prefer to be in the shade drinking lemonade. However, for most people, when the temperature turns up into the 80s and 90s, it may be advisable to stay inside and get on the treadmill, elliptical or whatever machine you dislike like me.
If you’re not used to working out in hot and hazy conditions, it doesn’t make sense to put yourself at risk. But for those who still prefer the haze and heat of being outside, be mindful that 80 degrees and upward requires a lot more attention to hydration and electrolytes.
On hot and humid days, I always start drinking lots of water at least an hour to ninety minutes before I step outside to run. You’d be surprised how much water you sweat out by just being outside and not even moving. Also, you must put some electrolytes in your body for muscle contractions, mainly sodium, potassium and chloride. I prefer to eat fruit to get my electrolytes in, usually bananas and oranges, but any fruit will do. If you prefer mass-produced products like Gatorade and energy bars, keep in mind they contain chemical additives and lots of added sugar, which aren’t in the best interest of your body.
Lastly, finding a shaded area to workout in is preferable. I know you want to get your melanin game on, but the sun can be brutal. I do a lot of trail running, so the shade from the trees gives me some added protection. Also, there’s no heat coming up from the concrete like there is running the streets.
All that said, there’s no excuse. Get out there and make it happen!