Last week was THE week. The one we’ve all been waiting for and definitely the one I’ve been thinking about all year. Good ole Blighty had a heatwave. Finally! We dusted off the BBQ’s, slapped on some last minute tan and maayyybbee had a mid-week tipple, just because. But one of the biggest reasons the sun gets me so excited is that outdoor workouts are so much more enjoyable. “I want to make the most of the weather” is a phrase I’ve never muttered more in the last week as I laced up and headed out. And I was beyond hot. It was a bit of a disaster and I ended up being frustrated, annoyed and de-motivated when I got home from a run, dripping in sweat and I was slower than I’ve ever been. Welcome to hot weather workouts everyone!
So, while I moan all winter and spring about it not being hot enough, I now found myself whingeing that I couldn’t exercise when I wanted. After a couple of days I think I nailed it and wanted to share what I’ve found works for me.
DRINK, DRINK AND MORE DRINK
Probably the most obvious one but drinking lots of water is the most important thing you can do in hot weather workouts. Health guidelines state that we should be drinking around 8 glass a day but throw high temperatures and exercise in that and it should really be 10-15 glasses. But I always think that it’s completely down to the individual and you might find you need more. I try to never let myself get to the point of feeling thirsty and always carry a bottle of chilled water with me on a run, cycle or floor workout.
PICK YOUR TIME WISELY
To be completely honest, I’ve been terrible at this lately. I get so excited about blue skies and warm breezes that I’ll leave my desk at lunch and head out for a quick 5k followed by circuit training. Uh-huh, what an idiot! My run was awful, I felt tired, dizzy and achey. Not to mention the full blown sweat fest that I endured for the following three hours with my head in a fan! So, the moral of the story is to bite the bullet and wake up early to squeeze in a workout (which is what I prefer while I still have the energy) or wait until the sun sets and make the most of a cool evening breeze.
LOWER YOUR EXPECTATIONS
As someone who puts 110% into every session, I find it really difficult not to beat PB’s or finish a hot weather workout feeling satisfied. But these are the days when heading out is purely to just enjoy whatever it is you’re doing and make the most of the weather (there it is again!). Our bodies are working extra hard in the heat to regulate our temperature so listen to it – if you’re struggling it’s not the time to push through it.
SWITCH IT UP
One of the (many) things I love about getting my heart pumping and muscles moving is the freedom I have to keep my body guessing. It’s easy to become regimented in a routine so it’s great to have an excuse to re-assess your regime. Perfect hot weather workouts include yoga, circuits, walking and interval training which let the body rest more and cool off. If long runs are off the cards, I love to go on an evening walk up hills and along the fields followed by a quick 15 minute circuit on the local playing field or in my garden. It leaves my body feeling strong not stressed.
SPF is something that’s often overlooked in summer workouts and it’s so so important that we slather it on to avoid burns, age spots and fine lines. Too many times I’ve underestimated how warm it is outside and come back with the most hideous tan lines imagineable. Note to self: A racerback tan is not the one.
What are your hot weather workouts? Let me know in the comments below