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Keep cool during your summer workout; tips from the American Heart Association

 

American Heart AssociationNashville, TN – You want to keep working out. But the polar vortex cool spell is over, and it’s hot – REALLY hot. Southern summer hot.

Before you decide to take a break until fall, you can still stay fit in summer – with some common-sense precautions from the American Heart Association.
American Heart Association - Heat Stroke Symptoms

How do you keep cool during your summer workout?

Be smarter than the heat.

  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Maintain salt-water balance by drinking plenty of fluids (preferably water) before, during and after physical activity.  Avoid alcoholic and caffeinated beverages.
  • Exercise smarter, not harder. Work out during the cooler parts of the day, preferably when the sun’s radiation is minimal — early in the morning or early in the evening. Decrease exercise intensity and duration at high temperatures or relative humidity.  And don’t hesitate to take your exercise inside, to the gym, the mall or anyplace else where you can get in regular physical activity.
  • Ease into it. Allow your body to adapt partially to heat through repeated gradual daily exposures. Your body acclimatizes and increases its circulatory and cooling efficiency in only four to 14 days.
  • Dress the part. Wear minimal amounts of clothing to facilitate cooling by evaporation. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing in breathable fabrics such as cotton.
  • Team up.  If you can, exercise with a friend or family member. It’s safer, and could be more fun.

And keep an eye out for any signs of danger, such as heat stress, heat stroke and related complications.

Symptoms of heat exhaustion:

  • Headaches
  • Heavy sweating
  • Cold, moist skin, chills
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Weak or rapid pulse
  • Muscle cramps
  • Fast, shallow breathing
  • Nausea, vomiting or both

Symptoms of heat stroke:

  • Warm, dry skin with no sweating
  • Strong and rapid pulse
  • Confusion and/or unconsciousness
  • High fever
  • Throbbing headaches
  • Nausea, vomiting or both

Take steps to cool down and get medical attention immediately if you experience any of these symptoms.

More at www.heart.org


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