Summer is HOT in Texas, this we know. With average high temperatures for June and July in the mid-90s, we often find ourselves avoiding the outdoors and consequently missing out on the energizing, rejuvenating and relaxing benefits of spending time in nature. This summer, instead of letting the heat dictate your plans for you, enjoy the heat smartly so that you can still enjoy being active and outside. How so? Plan your time outdoors strategically by scheduling outdoor activities as close to sunrise and sunset as possible. For us Austinites, that means around 6:30am and 8:25pm. On the other hand, if you do find yourself exercising outdoors during the heat of the day, here are a few pointers to help keep you safe and as comfortable as possible:
- Hydrate! Drink fluids before you feel thirsty, as thirst is not a good indicator of either dehydration or fluid needs.
- Allow yourself to acclimatize to exercising in the heat (which can take 10-14 days). Until your body is completely adjusted to the intense heat, reduce the intensity of your exercise.
- Dress as lightly as possible and in fabrics that breathe or wick away moisture. The more loose-fitting the better!
- Wear sunscreen with a rating of at least 20-30
- Always wear a hat if you will be exposed to direct sun rays. The head is a prominent place to gain heat, not just to lose it!
Long story short, don’t dread the Texas summer heat — outsmart it!