Summer has officially begun! And if you live in the southwest US like we do, you’re already smack dab in the middle of a serious heatwave. So what happens when you need to get your training in? We’ve rounded up a few tips to help you stay safe on the hottest days and make the most of the summer training season.
1. Be an early bird. According to science, barring any unusual weather activity, the coldest time of day is just after the sun rises. In Arizona, we like to get out as soon as there is enough light to be safe (or in the dark with a light for longer workouts) and aim to hit that sweet spot of the coolest time of day about 75% through the workout.
2. Bring fluid. Staying hydrated is important year-round, but especially so in the summer. Carry an insulated water bottle filled with ice water (or sports drink for longer workouts) to keep your fluid refreshingly chilly.
3. Keep the sun off. Wearing sunscreen is a no-brainer, but if you aim to keep the sun off your skin entirely, you’ll also feel cooler. Look for wide brim hats and long sleeve technical apparel made with fabrics designed to help you stay cool.
4. Seek a shady route. Shade is your friend in the summer. Solar radiation can make you feel 10-15 degrees warmer than the air temperature. The air in the shade isn’t any cooler, but it feels cooler, and that counts!
5. Leave fido home. If your training partner has 4 legs, this time of year it’s best to give them a break. Dogs can’t sweat to cool themselves, so it can be harder for them to cool down.
6. Embrace the indoors. There are so many options for getting in a great workout inside – the treadmill, spin bike, climbing wall or group fitness classes to name a few. No gym membership? Many municipalities offer inexpensive classes and open gym time during the summer through their recreation departments.
Just can’t resist heading outdoors but missed your early morning time window? Know the dangers and dial back the intensity and duration. Better to be safe than sorry!