When you exercise, your heart rate increases to ensure that your muscles receive enough oxygen. This also leads to an increase in temperature for your body. In hot and humid weather, such as Singapore, our body temperatures could rise further to dangerously high levels.
When your body becomes overheated, you may experience heat exhaustion, which can manifest physically as headaches, dizziness, weakness, and rapid heartbeat. If left untreated, heat exhaustion may lead to heat strokes, which can be fatal.
So, how can you exercise safely in the heat? Here are some suggestions:
1) Choose a time when the weather is cooler: As we all know, the hottest part of the day is in the afternoon. So, schedule your outdoor exercises in the morning or evenings. Sometimes, late in the afternoon may accord cooler temperatures. Take advantage during the cooler hours of the day to go for your jogs or runs.
2) Find some shades: Working out even on a hot day can be more bearable if you can choose places with shade. Instead of running in a wide open field under the sun, would you consider working out in a park or garden where you can be sheltered from the sun? Another way to remain cool while exercising outdoors is near a body of water where there is a breeze.
If it's extremely hot outside, it might be wise to take your activity indoors. An indoor walking track or treadmill is ideal, such as those found in a gym. Or you can simply choose to work out from your home. All you need is a yoga mat and you’re all set!
3) Choose suitable attire: While cotton is comfortable and is suitable for daily wear, it doesn't effectively wick away sweat – important during a workout. Instead, choose a loose-fitting polyester/cotton blend instead, or synthetic fibres, such as spandex, designed especially for wicking during exercise.
When the sun is out, you may also consider lighter-coloured clothing. Cooling towels can also be considered may be an option too.
4) Drink up: Ensure that you drink plenty of fluids. And it is important to avoid alcohol consumption before exercising. In hot weather and after hard activity, we will lose plenty of fluids. So, it is necessary to drink sufficient water before and after an exercise. While fruit juice, smoothies, and soft drinks may be considered as fluids, they are also high in sugar.
If you are dehydrated you may experience increased thirst, a dry mouth, dark urine, infrequent urination and worse, rapid heat rates. Severe dehydration necessitates immediate medical treatment.
5) Stop when you have to: Stop working out if you feel any signs of heat illness. Especially in very hot weather, it may not be a good idea to push yourself too hard. If you feel ill anytime, take a break!
Also monitor your heart rate. Slow down or stop if your heart rate is too high. There are times when you need to reduce your workout intensity, especially when the weather is extremely hot. Use common sense to avoid heat stress.
Keeping cool and hydrated are not the only things you have to look out for when exercising in the hot tropical climate. It is also important to protect your eyes. Choose sunglasses which give UV protection so that you feel more comfortable and avoid damage to your eyes.
Sunday Shades Co has a whole range of fun, vibrant and high-quality sports sunglasses for your outdoor activities. Sunday Shades sunglasses designed for Asian-fit, very snug and are very lightweight (just 22g). Of course, they have UV400 protection and are polarized too. Check them out today!