Summer is here. The outdoor activities are endless: gardening, a run or walk, swimming, and more. But with summer sun and heat, you have to protect yourself from the elements, and stay cool!
Did you know exercise in high temperatures or humidity can cause heat exhaustion? That’s the body’s response to excessive loss of water and salt through sweat.1 You may be at risk if you experience one or more of the following:2
Remember these symptoms. Stay active, and keep a watch on how you’re feeling in the sun, heat, and humidity. Follow these safety tips, and enjoy your favorite summertime activities.
Dehydration is when your body loses too much water. Preventing dehydration may be as simple as drinking more water and a little preparation. Start by drinking at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. Drink extra water before you start an activity that may make you sweat. Drink water before, during, and after a workout. Bring a to-go cup or bottle of water with you when you exercise.3
Do you feel like you sweat twice as much in hot and humid weather? Higher humidity can make it feel even hotter, since your body may not cool off as well by sweating. This could put you at a greater risk for heat-related risks.
Protect your face
This includes your eyes, ears, and neck, so make a special effort to protect them. Wear a lightweight hat with ventilation. That way, you can cover your face and allow your head to breathe. Wear sunglasses that protect against UV rays and block glare during exercise. Find shaded areas for your summertime activities when you can.
The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimates that about 91,270 new melanomas, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, will be diagnosed in 2018. Also, the ACA estimates that about 9,320 people are expected to die of melanoma in 2018.4,5 Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States.6
Protect yourself. Wear sunscreen of at least SPF 15 that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. Apply it 30 minutes before going in the sun, so it can bind to the skin and help prevent sunburn. Take extra steps if you plan to do water sports or if your activity will make you sweat a lot. Use a waterproof sunscreen, and reapply every two hours.7
Now that you know some dangers of exercising in the heat and humidity, here are ways to help avoid these dangers and enjoy your time outdoors this summer.
On some summer days, it may be just too hot to exercise safely outdoors. But don't stop moving; just change your plans and exercise inside. Try these ways to stay active indoors:
Bottom line? Stay active - and keep cool this summer.
This material is provided for informational use only and should not be construed as medical advice or used in place of consulting a licensed medical professional. You should consult with your doctor to determine what is right for you.