FORT MYERS, Fla. – As temperatures rise in Southwest Florida, just the thought of exercising outside can make you feel weak. WINK News Fitness expert Mike Drumm was in the studio with tips to beat the heat.
Time your Exercise: Sun and humidity levels are highest during the midday, and so you’re at greater risk for dehydration, sunburn and heat exhaustion during this time. To minimize the effects of the weather, work out in the early morning (before 10am.) or late evening after 7.
Wear the Right Clothing: Everyone, especially seniors, should dress for the weather with light-colored and loose-fitting clothes to help feel cooler and more comfortable. Or other fabrics designed to wick away moisture will help keep your body cooler. It’s not sweating itself that cools your body, but rather the evaporation of sweat. So avoid wearing clothing that soaks up sweat but doesn’t allow it to evaporate.
Protect Your Eyes and Skin: Everyone, young and old, should wear sunscreen when outdoors. The elderly especially need the extra sun protection to help keep them healthy. Hats are also a great idea, especially for those with light colored hair and those with only distant memories of a full head of hair. Wearing sunglasses can protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and preserve your vision.
Stay Hydrated: The more you sweat, the more you’ll need to rehydrate to avoid heat cramps, exhaustion, or worse, heat stroke. Make sure to carry a bottle of water with you. You’re better off drinking a small amount more frequently than downing a lot of water all at once. Seniors are more susceptible to dehydration than younger people because they lose their ability to conserve water as they age. They also can become less aware of their thirst and have difficulty adjusting to temperature changes. Aim to drink 6 to 8 glasses of water per day. Be sure those drinks are non-alcoholic and decaffeinated, they may taste good, but they will only further your dehydration.