High temperatures and intense sunshine combine to make heat exhaustion and heat stroke serious risks for those engaging in moderate to vigorous outdoor activities for sustained periods of time. So if you’re planning a running, hiking, biking, climbing, or similar outdoor adventure for the near future, be sure to follow these 7 tips to beat the heat:
- Wear lightweight clothing made of breathable fabrics or moisture-wicking material to absorb sweat and keep your skin dry. Avoid cotton and dark colored clothing, which tend to retain more heat than high-tech synthetics.
- Soak small face cloths or hand towels in water, and then roll them up and place them in the freezer the night before your outing. You can carry the frozen towels in a plastic bag and pull one out to dab your face and neck whenever you need a quick cool-down.
- Begin hydrating approximately one hour prior to the start of your activity by sipping 8 to 12 ounces of water, juice, or other nonalcoholic, decaffeinated beverages.
- When possible and if safe to do so, try to schedule vigorous exercise for the coolest times of the day. In most places, this generally means before 7 a.m. or after 8 p.m. during the summer months.
- For longer outings, be sure to pace yourself or your group to help prevent overexertion. Allow adequate time to acclimatize to the weather and temperature conditions, and increase speed or intensity very gradually.
- Take frequent breaks in a cool, shaded area away from direct sunlight. Use these opportunities to rehydrate, refuel with nutritious food choices such as cold fruit or yogurt, and assess all group members’ physical condition.
- Consider wearing an evaporative or hybrid cooling vest from CozyWinters. Available in many styles, these vests provide up to 10 hours of cooling action even in very hot conditions, making them perfect for sports and other strenuous activities.
Summer is coming, which means triple digit temperatures, high humidity, and the very real dangers of extreme heat are not far behind. But don’t let the elements keep you cooped up at home for the entire season. Instead, use these tips to help beat the heat so you can enjoy everything the great outdoors has to offer.