As the summer months get hotter and hotter, it is tempting to stay inside with the glorious AC and rest until the weather becomes cooler. As tempting as this may be, consider the health benefits of regular exercise (see below exercise recommendations for adults) and utilize all of the resources at your fingertips to stay as healthy and happy!
- Check the weather report and avoid exercising outside during the hottest times of the day, usually between 10am-3 pm.
- If you are a morning bird or a night owl, you can get in a good morning or late night workout
- You can plan to exercise some days inside and some days outside to keep your workouts interesting
- Join a fitness class such as a Spin class or a Zumba class which is usually located indoors
- If you have some friends who play Racketball, consider joining them
- Take a brisk walk through a large air-conditioned building open to the public such as an indoor mall
- Get creative and do some of your more active household chores. Don’t forget that vacuuming, scrubbing, lifting, and many other activities may be considered moderate-intensity aerobic activity depending on your heart rate (50-70% of your max heart rate roughly estimated by the following formula: 220-age in years). So if you are 40 years old, your target heart rate should be approximately 90-126 beats per minute. However, you should always consult with your doctor regarding specific recommendations for cardiovascular health.
- Utilize resources in your home:
- For example, if you have stairs, you can climb stairs and break up this activity with safe jogging around your home.
- If you have a swimming pool: swim and play water games with your friends and family
- Join a night league where the practice their sport or fun activity in the cool hours of the evening
- Have fun like the kids! Get the whole family and run through the sprinklers, toss water balloons, and play other water games in the yard
- Last but certainly not least, consider joining a gym especially if they provide exercise classes with blessed AC during the hottest times of the day
- Stay hydrated! It is important to drink plenty of water before, during, and after you exercise, especially in hot weather. Remember, you have to consistently drink water throughout the day even when you are not exercising to stay hydrated.
- Replenish your electrolytes: it is best to do this with plant-based healthy foods such as bananas, dates, raisins, and avocados.
- Choose shady areas and wear loose-fitted, light clothing
Signs of Heat Stroke & Heat Exhaustion:
- High body temperature: body temperatures elevating above normal: 98.6 deg give or take 1 degree for adults.
- Altered mental state or behavior: Confusion, agitation, slurred speech, irritability, delirium, seizures and coma can all result from heatstroke.
- Alteration in sweating: In heatstroke brought on by hot weather, your skin will feel hot and dry to the touch. However, in heatstroke brought on by strenuous exercise, your skin may feel dry or slightly moist.
- Nausea and vomiting: You may feel sick to your stomach or vomit.
- Flushed skin: Your skin may turn red as your body temperature increases.
- Rapid breathing: Your breathing may become rapid and shallow.
- Racing heart rate: Your pulse may significantly increase because heat stress places a tremendous burden on your heart to help cool your body.
- Headache: Your head may throb.
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