Avoiding Heat Stroke While Training Outdoors

Precautions when training outdoors

Training outside is a great way to maximize your efforts to get back into shape. However, one thing some people often fail to prepare for is the heat. The body is at constant odds with the surrounding environment trying to keep its temperature steady. Now when a person runs hard the core temperature of the body automatically increases. The body goes into overdrive attempting to bring the temperature back to normal levels. Coupled with the increased body temperature induced by running and the hot outside temperature, this cooling mechanism can easily fail to function properly. This is exactly when heat exhaustion sets in.

People often feel fatigued, disorientated, dizzy, and in some serious cases collapse without warning. Even though heat exhaustion is a very real threat when running outside under the sun, there are number of ways you can protect yourself from it. Without further ado, here’s our list of top 5 tips to fight heat exhaustion.

Time of Day

It’s not a good idea to pick the hottest time of a summer day to go out for a run. The run may feel more challenging but it can also end pretty badly and pretty fast. The best time for a run is early mornings. This is when the sun is out, but the temperature outside is still comparatively low. On top of that the oxygen levels are higher in the morning, which means you can push yourself harder feeling less exhausted.

Hydrate

This may seem like an obvious advice, but you would be surprised how many runners fall prey to heat exhaustion due to poor hydration habits. When you are outside running you lose a lot of water through sweating. Replenish that by constantly hydrating yourself. If you planning a short 30 minute run regular water would work just fine. However, for longer runs carry a bottle of sports drink to maintain the body’s electrolyte levels.

After your workout juicing is also a great way to replenish what your body has lost out in the sun.  Having a juicer in your kitchen is going to let you use fresh fruits and vegetables to give the body what it needs in the time of crisis.

It is vital that you are aware of the signs of dehydration and know what you can do to prevent and treat it should it occur.

Know When To Quit

Fitness is all about pushing your body to its maximum limits. However, it’s also important to understand personal limitations. Don’t be afraid to quit if you start feeling light-headed or experience momentary blackouts. These are clear signs that your body is not being able to cope with the excess heat. Find a shade and stop to hydrate yourself.

Don’t Push It

If you have no experience in running under the sun, it’s best that you take it slow and acclimatize your body as you go along. Seasoned outdoor runners should also acclimatize their bodies during the first few weeks of the summer months. Start slow and keep the distance short. Once the body starts to adapt to the heat, slowly increase the pace and duration of your runs.

Wear Proper Clothes And Accessories

Wearing the right clothing and accessories goes a long way into keeping heat exhaustion at bay. Choose light colored, breathable, and loose fitting fitness wears. This will boost the evaporation rate of the sweat causing the body to cool down much faster. You should also consider wearing a proper sunscreen lotion and a sunglasses with decent UV protection.

Running is a fantastic activity for numerous reasons. It is great for your heart, your weight, and your mind. However, if you are not careful and attentive to your body while out jogging, it has the potential to be quite deadly. Get your workout in, just be careful while you are out there.

You can find out more information on what happens to your body during heat stroke by watching this very informative video below.