6 Tips for Safely Working Out in the Heat This Summer

6 Tips for Safely Working Out in the Heat This Summer

It’s summer, and the sun is beating down—but you want to keep moving and stay fit. Working out in the heat can be challenging, but it’s not impossible.

So, how do you keep working toward your training goals as the temperature soars? Let’s explore why it’s more challenging to train when it’s hot and provide six tips to help you stay on track.

Why Working Out in the Heat is Tougher

Heat adds more stress to the body. With warmer weather, your body’s core temperature increases, and it has to work harder to regulate it. Your heart has to pump faster to deal with the stress of the temperature and your movement—as if the workout wasn’t challenging enough by itself!

Contact a doctor before becoming active if you have any specific heat-related concerns or medical conditions. But if you’re generally healthy and active, these tips will help you keep moving this summer. If you feel unwell when working out in the heat, break off the session and get to a cooler place. If symptoms are extreme, contact a healthcare provider right away.

working out in the heat. One caucasian man young male athlete take a brake during outdoor training in the park outdoor gym hold supplement shaker in hand happy confident strong copy space

Tips for Working Out in the Heat:

Wear the Right Clothing

Make sure you’re wearing lightweight, breathable clothes that encourage airflow. Modest people might not want to take a bare-minimum approach, but others will find it helpful to remove as much clothing as possible. Be sure to check on what’s acceptable wherever you’re training.

Manage the Sun

Direct sunlight can heat things, so indoor workouts or shady spots are perfect. But if they aren’t available, wear sunscreen, protect your head with a hat, and wear light colors that don’t absorb as much heat. You’ll probably sweat a lot, so make sure to reapply sunscreen as needed according to the instructions on the bottle.

Enjoy the Breeze and Use Water

Air movement is your friend when it’s hot. Find breezy spots or fire up a fan to help you stay cool as you train. You might even douse yourself with a garden hose or occasionally soak your hat in water to cool down.

working out in the heat Asian girl take a break drink water from bottle after running exercise. Active young athlete sport woman pour water to rinse her face from sweat after workout for health care in evening in public park

Train Around the Heat

Check the forecast, see when it’s supposed to be the coolest, and plan your workout for that time.

Stay Hydrated

You’ll sweat, so you need to take in some fluid to replace what you lose. Remember, drinking too much is possible, so don’t overdo it here. For shorter workouts, ensure you have water available and sip as needed before, during, and after the workout. For long, intense workouts or events, you should consult an expert who can ensure you have the right plan. As for sports drinks, they’re an option, but they usually contain a lot of sugar. Check the labels so you pick beverages that support your goals.

Reduce Intensity as Needed

If it feels like you’re training in an oven, it’s fine to slow down, rest more often, or take breaks. Remember, one workout doesn’t make or break your training plan. Adjust your plan if it’s 95°F, and you feel like a piece of bacon. For example, you might cancel a high-intensity workout with sprinting, sled pushes, and pull-ups in favor of some heavy lifting in short sets with lots of recovery time between them. Or maybe you pass on the workout and ride your bike to a pool for a dip. That activity counts, too, even if it’s not a “workout.”

working out in the heat. close up shot of shoes of woman in a treadmill.

Ready to Get Started?

CrossFit Amoskeag is offering a free 7-day trial so you can experience the benefits of CrossFit for yourself. Sign up today and see what you’ve been missing!

FAQs about Working Out in the Heat

Is it safe to work out in the heat?

It can be safe if you take the necessary precautions. Wear appropriate clothing, stay hydrated, and listen to your body. If you feel unwell, stop immediately and seek a cooler environment.

What should I drink when working out in the heat?

Water is usually sufficient for shorter workouts. For longer, more intense workouts, you might need an electrolyte-replenishing drink. Avoid sugary drinks and consult a nutrition expert if you have specific needs.

How can I cool down quickly during a hot workout?

Find a breezy spot, use a fan, or apply cool water to your body. Taking breaks in a shaded area or an air-conditioned environment can also help.

What are the signs of heat exhaustion?

Signs include heavy sweating, weakness, dizziness, nausea, headache, and muscle cramps. If you experience these symptoms, stop exercising immediately, move to a cooler place, and drink water. Seek medical help if symptoms persist.

Can I still work out in the heat if I have a medical condition?

If you have any medical conditions, especially heart-related or heat-sensitive issues, consult your doctor before working out in the heat. They can provide guidance tailored to your health needs.

Following these 6 tips for safely working out in the heat this summer, you can safely continue working out in the heat and achieve your fitness goals despite the summer sizzle.