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Tips for Exercising Outside During Warmer Months

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

When the weather heats up, there may be several refreshing things that come to mind: swimming pools, days at the beach, ice cold beverages and plenty of air conditioning. It’s understandable that heavy exercise may not be quite at the top of your list of summer delights, especially since exercising in oppressively hot, humid weather can make even an average workout more challenging.

Staying active all year round, however, helps you maintain a healthy body weight, combat chronic diseases, improve sleep, reduce stress, and strengthen muscular and skeletal systems, among other benefits. So even when the temperatures rise, it’s important to keep your heart rate elevated too.

At SouthCoast Health, we are your partners in overall well-being throughout the year, so we’ve assembled some advice to help you stay active this summer.

Stay Cool

Experts at Penn Medicine recommend a cold shower before your workout, which may lower overall body temperature and keep your skin refreshed. Make sure to also maintain a selection of lightweight, possibly moisture-wicking clothing, to allow your skin to breathe more fully. Eating cool salads or frozen fruit before or after a workout may also help reduce your internal temperature and keep you energized.

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

“Drink water before, during and after physical activity, even if you don’t feel thirsty,” suggests the American Heart Association. During a workout, your body loses fluid through sweat, but also because of the harder work your muscles and other internal systems are doing. “Water regulates our body temperature, keeps our joints lubricated, helps prevent infections and delivers nutrients to our cells,” registered US dietitian and CNN contributor Lisa Drayer explains, so replenishing your body’s supply — especially when you may be sweating or exerting yourself more — is essential.

Consider Your Setting

Indoor gyms or even your home, where temperature can be easily regulated, are obvious choices for hot-weather exercise locations. But have you ever considered exercising in the rain? A 2013 Japanese study indicates that the lower temperatures experienced in wet conditions may increase the physical ramifications of your workout.

Exercising in pools or natural bodies of water may provide another alternative. Not only can you stay cool, but the Mayo Clinic Health System experts assert, “The viscosity of water . . . provides resistance during exercise, making aquatic exercise a great workout.”

When you exercise may also be as helpful as where. Timing physical activity for the morning or evening — when temperatures are slightly lower and the sun is not at its peak — can keep you more comfortable, too.

Keep in Touch

“Your body is a great communicator, and will let you know what’s going on — especially if you learn how to listen,” encourages SouthCoast Health Family Medicine physician, Dr. Misal Patel. Pay attention to muscle or joint pain, dizziness, shortness of breath, heart rate, and nausea while exercising, and be prepared to stop the activity and/or call for help.

Communicate with your doctor or healthcare specialist about any changes or concerns you have while exercising. Better yet — involve them from the get-go so that they can monitor your progress and provide support along the way.

At SouthCoast Health we are your partners in total wellness. To discuss an exercise plan for whole health in any kind of weather, click here to schedule an appointment or give us a call at 912-691-3600.

Whether you are looking for a primary care doctor or a pediatrician, or another medical specialist, SouthCoast Health has you covered with its wide range of world-class healthcare services, available throughout the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry. Founded in 1996, SouthCoast Health has 120 physicians and medical professionals in 17 locations in Savannah, Richmond Hill, Pooler, Rincon, Baxley, Hilton Head, Hinesville, and Statesboro. SouthCoast Health offers comprehensive medical services including: Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Allergy and Asthma, Cardiology, Endocrinology, Eye Care, Imaging, Infectious Diseases, Nephrology, Neurology, Physical Therapy, Podiatry, Sleep Medicine, Surgery, Clinical Trial Research Studies, Diabetic Self-Management Training Sessions, Dietetic Counseling, Laboratory Services, Massage Therapy, Optical Shop, Pharmacy, and Urgent Care.

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