Now that it is summer, it’s the perfect time to be outdoors. You might be tempted to do all your physical activity outside to take advantage of the warm, sunny weather, but there are a few things to look out for to stay safe when the temperatures and humidity rise.
It’s generally fine to be active outside in 80 degree weather, but any hotter, I suggest trying to take these precautions to avoid heat-related illness or injury:
- Stay hydrated. It’s critical to drink plenty of water when it is hot and humid and you are doing any physical activity.
- Try to exercise in the cooler parts of the day. Take your daily walks or runs in the early morning or right as the sun is setting at night.
- Stay in a shaded area if possible.
- Wear light-colored and breathable clothing.
- Apply sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30 and remember to reapply about every 2 hours or right after swimming.
- Take regular breaks and look out for signs of heat exhaustion such as nausea, dizziness, and headaches.
If you still want to get outside and it’s above 80 degrees, here are some low-intense activities that are great for movement while reducing risk of overheating:
- Light gardening and yard work in the morning or early evening.
- Walk or bike in a shaded park.
- Wash your car and cool yourself off with hose water.
- Go swimming.
Even if the activity requires less energy, it is still just as important to drink plenty of water, reapply sunscreen, and take breaks if needed. If you think you are experiencing symptoms of heat-related illness, call your provider immediately.