Even the best trained athletes must beware of soaring temperatures and too much sunshine.
As athletes there are two results we need to avoid in the heat.
First, we need to not over train – to become more aware of our body’s limits. The second thing we want to avoid is not training at all.
Do not use the heat as an excuse to be lazy.
Whether we are training inside or outside, we are susceptible to overheating and succumbing to heat exhaustion. Some signs of heat exhaustion are dizziness, fatigue, muscle cramps, nausea, profuse sweating and rapid heart rate. If not taken care of, they can lead to heat stroke, which is much more serious and can deter an athlete’s progress.
The first step for any athlete preparing to train, especially in the heat, is hydration, hydration, hydration.
The rule of thumb is to drink eight, 8 ounces of water a day. This rule typically applies to people who do not train. For athletes to avoid heat exhaustion, drink 120 ounces of water per day.
Sweating is our body’s cooling mechanism so we need to fuel that mechanism with plenty of water. Caffeine and alcohol inhibit hydration and should be kept to a minimum or completely avoided.
Athletes should also pay attention to sports-performance supplements that can increase dehydration, especially high-protein diets and protein supplements. While protein is important for an athlete’s recovery, it also increases dehydration. , So we have to remember proper water intake.
Train in the early morning or late evening to avoid both the sun and hottest part of the day. Limit outdoor training in the hottest parts of the day. Wear loose-fitting clothing to allow the sweat to evaporate, which helps cool the body.
After training, find a cool place or take a cool shower to lower body temperature.
***ADVERTISEMENT***Other measures to follow while training in summer include taking more rest between sets or reducing the intensity time to allow the body to acclimate to the heat and the body to cool down.
Protect yourself while training in the sun. Wear UV protective clothing, a hat and most importantly apply SPF 15 (or more) sunscreen. Athletes need to avoid sunburn because it accelerates the risk of heat exhaustion and can have long-lasting effects.
We have to train smart and listen to our bodies while trying to maintain training intensities and reach our goals. Take the preventative measures to ensure the minimizing affects of the heat while training.