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There is nothing I enjoy more than working out in the hot sun! I love the outdoors—exercising outside is so much more fun than staring at a treadmill for 30 minutes. While I enjoy my summer sweat sessions, I take precautions to make sure I’m exercising safely in the heat. Heat exhaustion and/or stroke are very serious threats and it’s important to exercise smart to keep you and your family healthy this summer!

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Here are a few tips to beat the heat this summer!

  1.  Wear sunscreen—There is nothing worse than a nasty sunburn, so be sure to load up on a waterproof sunscreen of at least 30 SPF so your skin will stay protected while exercising.
  2. Drink up—the quickest way to fall victim to the heat is to not drink enough water. You lose a lot of water while exercising in the heat, so be sure to replenish the water lost. Drinking water will also help keep your body temperature in check.
  3. Exercise at the right time—Exercising between the hours of 10am-2pm is generally not a good idea. Try exercising early in the morning or after dinner to avoid the sun’s direct rays.
  4. Don’t push yourself too hard—Listen to your body; if you feel faint or ill, back off and call it a day. Many times people push through their own body’s warning signs and end up in trouble just because they weren’t willing to listen to their body’s signals.
  5. Consider swimming on hot days—Swimming is the perfect activity on hot summer days! It’s also something fun you can do with your kids, so ditch that three-mile run and go swimming at your local pool!
  6. Wear protective gear—Wear a hat and sunglasses to keep the sun off your head and face. You take in most of the heat through your head so wearing these items will help keep you cool longer.
  7. DO NOT take your dog—Dogs can’t communicate how they’re feeling and it’s easy to miss signs of heat stroke in your pet. Or even worse, you may notice them but still be two miles away from home and have no choice but to make your pet dangerously push through just to get home. On hot and humid days, it’s best to keep your best friend at home.

*This advice should not replace the advice of your doctor.