Your Health, Nutrition and Fitness | 5 years ago

Top Tips for Exercising in the Heat

Exercising in high temperatures can be dangerous. These tips can help prevent dehydration and heat exhaustion, ensuring a safe and successful workout. 

 At Proactive Health by Carolinas HealthCare System, we see a lot of patients looking to take control of their own wellness and make an overall lifestyle change, and one of the most important steps in that process is developing an exercise routine that works for you. With the unrelenting heat we’ve experienced this summer, it’s important to exercise safely. Below are a few tips to keep in mind:

Hydration is Key

Always remember to hydrate before, during and after exercise! Especially in extreme heat, the importance of staying hydrated cannot be stressed enough. You should always begin your exercise well-hydrated and continue to drink water throughout your workouts. Drink cool water when possible – your body absorbs it faster. Remember, sports drinks can be consumed in moderation, but steer clear of juice and sodas. 

Don’t Rely on Thirst as a Signal That You’re Dehydrated

Feeling thirsty is not the best indicator of whether you need to drink more water. Thirst occurs after your body is already dehydrated and is satisfied before your water supply is fully replaced. This means you should constantly be hydrating, regardless of how you feel.

Mind the Humidity

The main way that our body cools itself down during exercise is through sweat, which evaporates when it hits our skin’s surface. When it’s very humid outside, our bodies don’t experience as much of the cooling effect because the air is already saturated, making it harder for sweat to evaporate. Consider moving your workouts inside on very humid days.

Wear Loose-Fitting Clothing 

Choose breathable and lightweight workout attire, which will allow air to better circulate during your workout while permitting sweat to evaporate more easily. This type of clothing can also protect your skin from sun exposure, which can lead to sun damage, skin irritation, breakouts or heat rashes. 

Know Your Limits

Don’t go overboard! If you begin to feel dizzy, nauseated, confused or have trouble breathing, stop immediately to rest. Listen to your body – it will tell you when you’re pushing yourself too hard. 

Greg Weidner, MD, FACP, is the Medical Director at Proactive Health by Carolinas HealthCare System. Dr. Greg Weidner believes in the power of the patient-doctor relationship. Prevention and total health are central to Dr. Weidner's approach to helping his patients live their best lives. He enjoys helping patients to become confident and empowered to manage their health, and have some fun along the way. 

For more information about Dr. Weidner and Proactive Health, visit