Tag Archives: summer

7 Tips for Summer Time Exercise

Summer is upon us!  The heat waves are coming and most places are seeing warm weather already.  While sweating more than we do during the winter doesn’t cause the body to burn more calories, it does have the potential to create dangerous situations.  Here are 7 Tips for Summer Time Exercise that will help ensure your safety when you’re summer time exerciseworking out in the heat.

Hydrate!  Water and sports drinks are your best bet for staying hydrated, which will help you avoid heat exhaustion, stroke and other heat related summer time exercise induced conditions.  Be careful to avoid alcohol, soda and other caffeinated drinks, especially before your workout, and aim to have 1/2 ounce of water per pound of body weight each day (200 pounds?  Shoot for 100 ounces of water every 24 hours).

Dress less.  Summer time exercise isn’t always a fashion show.  It’s about wearing what keeps you the most comfortable while helping you stay cool.  Light colors that reflect instead of attract the sun and lightweight sweat wicking fabrics are a must for any warm weather warrior.

Have perfect timing.  Schedule your workouts for cooler times of day.  Early morning or after the sun sets as usually go-to times for summer time exercise, but if you have to catch some rays while you sweat, make sure you have shade nearby.  Look for shaded trails or covered areas to keep the sun off your back, and if you’re near a beach, don’t be afraid to hit the sand and take a dip in the cool water.

Adjust everything slowly.  Allow your body time to get used to warmer temperatures, higher humidity and working harder.  Gradually expose your body to the more intense weather and within 10 to 14 days, you’ll be ready to handle the tougher conditions.  You should also think about adjusting the difficulty and length of your session when you’re facing more than just a hard workout.

Lather up.  Sunscreen is a must when you’re going to be getting your sweat on outside.  Apply 15 minutes before you head out to give your skin time to absorb the product, otherwise you’ll sweat it right off.  Be aware that even on cloudy or overcast days, the sun does get through and you still need that protection to avoid getting any unwanted sun.

Find a buddy.  Not only is working out with a friend more fun, it makes summer time exercise more safe.  No matter how careful, hydrated and lightly clothed you are, the heat can make summer time exericsecrazy things happen.  Having someone with you gives another layer of security to working out at a dangerous time of year.

Listen to your body.  You should always be doing this, but when summer time exercise puts your health at risk, it’s more important than ever.  Stop working out, find some shade and replace electrolytes at the first sign of dizziness, faintness, exhaustion or nausea.

Want to make your summer time exercise warm weather safe and friendly?  Ask FitNicePT for help!  Email us at Info@FitNicePT.com or fill out the form below:

Working Out in the Heat

It’s hot out.  If you’re outside for any extended period of time, you have to be prepared to deal with the higher temperatures and increased humidity of summer.  Exercising in the heat presents its own set of difficulties in addition to the normal challenges of a good workout.  There are ways to manage the risk of suffering a heat related injury, and planning to avoid the dangers of heat exhaustion, heat cramps and heat stroke is half the battle.

Plan your workout.  Planning your workout in advance has two advantages.  You can run at cooler times of day, early morning or evening, giving you lower temperatures to deal with, and you can plan to run in loops.  Running in loops provides you the opportunity to place bottled water, cold towels or energy gels conveniently on your route and keeps you focused on only completing one loop at a time.

Hydrate.  Dehydration is a huge threat during the warmer months, so make sure you are familiar with your personal hydrate needs since they can vary greatly with body type and weather conditions.  During your workout, drink when you are thirsty, being careful not to over-hydrate and dilute your electrolytes, which can be equally as dangerous and being under hydrated.

Dress for it.  Wear light colored, sweat wicking clothes.  If you live in a humid environment, you’ll probably want to wear less than those who don’t deal with as much.  Visors are great for keeping the sun out of your face while also allowing heat to escape from your head.  Always remember your sun block!

Slow down.  The heat and humidity add a dimension to your training that makes it tougher.  You can respond to the increased demand on your body by slowing your pace to help keep your heart rate and core temperature down.  Any exercises in rough conditions helps prepare your body for better performance in better weather.

Adjust.  Allow your body time to adjust to the heat.  Decreasing your pace, working in some walking intervals and running by perceived effort rather than pace are all great ways to give your body a chance to get used to working in the warmth.

Now you’re all ready to beat the heat during your next outdoor exercise session!  Want help with your summer wardrobe or what to put in your cool pack?  Ask us!  Info@FitNicePT.com

Sports Drinks 101

As the warm, or just plain hot, summer months approach, many fitness enthusiasts worry about hydration. Especially as the weather becomes friendlier, people want to exercise outdoors. Opting for something with flavor, like a sports drink, rather than just plain water, will not only make you more likely to drink it, but can have other post-workout benefits as well.

For most people, the food we eat today has enough salt in it to keep us from facing a deficiency. If you are training for a marathon or exercising very hard for several hours a day, you burn through more salt through sweat than the average person and will need to make a point to replenish the fluids in your body. When we work out for extended periods of time, the important nutrients we lose are called electrolytes. Types of electrolytes include potassium and sodium, which are essential for proper hydration, maintaining fluid balance and preventing muscle cramps. That’s why, as an athlete, it’s so important to replace them after we sweat them out.

Plain old water isn’t loaded with electrolytes, so the best place to get them quickly is by drinking a sports drink. While all good sports drinks contain at least 15mg of sodium, there are also sports drinks that offer various amounts of both carbohydrates and protein in addition to sodium and potassium. These drink choices are absorbed and maintain fluid balance faster than plain water, getting your body the fluids it needs right away. Carbohydrate-protein sports drinks have been tested and are shown to possibly hydrate better than regular, no protein, sports drinks by aiding with fluid retention. The calories from carbohydrates in sports drinks have also been shown to improve endurance, increase energy, promote faster recovery and limit any immune system suppression that can happen after a tough workout.

When a workout leaves you wiped out, stick with your sports drink. Energy drinks might quench your thirst and give you a big boost of energy after a tough session, but they’ll also dehydrate you while leading you to an energy crash no one enjoys. Make sure you’re maintaining hydration all day; don’t worry about it only after you’ve worked out. Don’t worry about getting your eight glasses of water a day, instead, drink to match your thirst and use your urine as a gauge for maintaining proper hydration.

Summer Hydration Tips

As the warm, or just plain hot, summer months approach, many fitness enthusiasts worry about hydration.  Especially as the weather becomes friendlier, people want to exercise outdoors.  Opting for something with flavor, like a sports drink, rather than just plain water, will not only make you more likely to drink it, but can have other post-workout benefits as well.

For most people, the food we eat today has enough salt in it to keep us from facing a deficiency.  If you are training for a marathon or exercising very hard for several hours a day, you burn through more salt through sweat than the average person and will need to make a point to replenish the fluids in your body.  When we work out for extended periods of time, the important nutrients we lose are called electrolytes.  Types of electrolytes include potassium and sodium, which are essential for proper hydration, maintaining fluid balance and preventing muscle cramps.  That’s why, as an athlete, it’s so important to replace them after we sweat them out.

Plain old water isn’t loaded with electrolytes, so the best place to get them quickly is by drinking a sports drink.  While all good sports drinks contain at least 15mg of sodium, there are also sports drinks that offer various amounts of both carbohydrates and protein in addition to sodium and potassium.  These drink choices are absorbed and maintain fluid balance faster than plain water, getting your body the fluids it needs right away.  Carbohydrate-protein sports drinks have been tested and are shown to possibly hydrate better than regular, no protein, sports drinks by aiding with fluid retention.  The calories from carbohydrates in sports drinks have also been shown to improve endurance, increase energy, promote faster recovery and limit any immune system suppression that can happen after a tough workout.

When a workout leaves you wiped out, stick with your sports drink.  Energy drinks might quench your thirst and give you a big boost of energy after a tough session, but they’ll also dehydrate you while leading you to an energy crash no one enjoys.   Make sure you’re maintaining hydration all day; don’t worry about it only after you’ve worked out.  Don’t worry about getting your eight glasses of water a day, instead, drink to match your thirst and use your urine as a gauge for maintaining proper hydration.

Have questions about sports drinks or when to use them?  Email us at Info@FitNicePT.com

Hydration 101

The human body is two thirds water, and during toasty summer months, proper hydration is the most important weapon you have against heat related injuries.  Fluids before, during and after your workout or run are paramount to staying healthy and energized because they help the body regulate its temperature.  Hydration should be part of your everyday life, carry a water bottle and shoot for 60 ounces a day, drink water every time you drink coffee, soda, or alcohol.  The best way to gauge your hydration needs is based on thirst.  Drink when you’re thirsty, not a designated or predetermined times, since too much fluid can be just as dangerous as too little.hydrationBefore your workout or run you want to put both food and fluid into your system.  Have an energy bar or gel, making sure whatever you eat is easy to digest.  Back off fluids roughly 30 minutes before your long run, checking that you need to pee before you go and your urine is a light yellow color.

During your workout, especially if you are running, you want to take in approximately four ounces of fluid per mile. Don’t force yourself to drink, drink if you’re thirsty, but stay on top of fluid in-take; it’s hard to catch up if you fall behind.  Any drink you bring on a run should taste good cold as well as warm so you can drink them when you need it most.  It’s hard to suffer drinking warm water, so practice or pick a sports drink with a flavor you enjoy.

After your workout or run, you need to recover.  To do that, your body needs both carbs and protein, preferably in a 4:1 ratio.  Review how much fluid you took in, and determine how you did.  Post workout or run, have cool water or recovery drinks because you will be more inclined to drink them.

Stay hydrated during your regular gym workout to aid performance and get better results.  If training for a race, practice your hydration strategy by mixing it up with different types of sports drinks, recovery drinks, and temperatures of liquid.  Be careful not to force fluids, and listen to your body when it tells you to take some in.  Following these guidelines and listening closely to your body are the best ways to prevent heat related injuries all year long.

Beat the Heat This Summer

Working out in the heat can be dangerous, so it’s important to know the signs of potential situations and how to prevent them.  Risk factors for potential heat related injuries include high temperatures and relative humidity of 60% or greater, which hampers the evaporation of sweat and limits your body’s ability to cool itself.  Wearing light and sweat wicking clothing are good ways to aid your body in staying cool, in addition to being properly hydrated with water and sports drink.

  • Heat cramps are muscle cramps that occur during and after exercise, like normal cramps, they are caused by a lack of water and electrolytes, and a build-up of lactic acid.  Heat cramps are a cramp or spasm of the muscle that can show up while exercising or hours after, though they usually begin when sweating heavily.  Prevent heat cramps by ensuring hydration with lots of water or sports drink before, during and after exercise.  Should you get heat cramps, stop your current activity and massage the area while drinking water or sports drink.
  • Heat exhaustion is caused by a lack of fluids and the inability of the body to cool itself with enough sweat, and there are two types: water depletion and salt depletion.  Signs of heat exhaustion include weakness, dizziness, fatigue, heat cramps, and nausea.  To treat heat exhaustion, immediately get out of the heat and rest.  Replenish fluids, and use cooling methods such as a shower, ice towels, and fans.  Avoid any outdoor activity for a week, as you will be more sensitive to temperatures, and check with your doctor before resuming strenuous exercise.
  • Heat stroke, or sun stroke, is the most serious type of heat related injury and a medical emergency.  Heat stroke occurs when the body fails to regulate its own temperature and it continues to rise even though you may be producing lots of sweat.  A body temperature over 105 is a sure sign of heat stroke; others include red or dry skin, confusion, headache, increased heart rate and seizures.  If you suspect a heat stroke, call 9-1-1 immediately, get into the shade or air conditioning and apply ice towels until medical help arrives.

Any and all of these heat related injuries can be avoided by taking proper precautions, wearing the right clothes, and listening to your body.  Take what you’ve learned here to help you Beat the Heat this summer!

 

Tips to Avoid Over Training

It’s summertime.  Everyone wants to be in shape for the season, but be careful.  Working too hard for results can cause problems.  Over training happens when the body is exercised at a frequency and intensity that exceed its recovery time.  The results from over training can include exhaustion, a loss of progress in both strength and cardiovascular fitness, and injury.  How can you tell if you’re over training?  If you’re hurt, take time off to recover fully.  Heading back into the gym the first day you feel 100% will lead to re-injury, longer required recovery time, and more frustration.  Feeling sluggish and fatigued rather than energized after a workout is your body telling you whatever you’ve been doing is too much.  Likewise, exercising improves sleep patterns, and if you’re having trouble sleeping, too much gym time could be the cause.

Solutions to over training are simple:

1)  Eat for energy.  Make sure diet isn’t the culprit and you’re getting enough carbohydrates to power your workout regimen.

2)  Mix it up.  Throw something new into your routine, cross-train while alternating hard and easy days.  Usually spend half an hour on the treadmill?  Jump in the pool or climb on a spin bike instead.

3)  Take rest days seriously.  Rest is just as important as exercise, and not giving your body enough time to recover from strenuous exercise will inevitably cause fatigue, moodiness, and injury.  Take at least one day a week away from the gym or running and be serious about it.  Use the rest day(s) to replenish the things your body has burned through, like carbohydrates, proteins and fluids.

4)  Listen to your body.  Still feeling sluggish four days after a hard workout?  Are your knees or shoulders hurting more than they should?  Is soreness sticking around after two days?  Is your performance slipping?  These are all signals your body gives to let you know it needs a break.  Take the time to recover your body is asking for, and you’ll not only feel better, but workout better too.