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The Truth About Hot Workouts, Profuse Sweat & Outdoor Workouts

Contrary to popular belief profuse sweat does not indicate a good workout.  Sweating profusely only means that you are really hot and your body is trying to cool you down, and nothing more.  August can be pretty brutal in NC so here are some tips for exercising safely.

In fact, the hotter it is wherever you are training (indoors or outdoors) the worse your workout will be.  Why? Because heat alone is exhausting and steals precious energy that could be invested in your actual exercise. 

Your muscle cells will die at 104 degrees Fahrenheit, and your body will restrict your capacity to prevent permanent damage.  Our instincts to find shade and slow down on a hot and sunny day are survival instincts.

What’s more is that combining high heat and intense exercise is dangerous.  Heat stroke is real.  Heating your body up from the inside (with exercise) and from the outside (hot environment) is a recipe for overheating and there are dangerous consequences.

  Here are 5 takeaways

1.     Don’t be confused: don’t let anyone trick you into thinking that working out in a heated room or the beating Carolina summer sun will help you burn extra calories. You will actually burn fewer calories because you’re prematurely exhausted.  It is also potentially dangerous.

2.     Listen to your body:  if your body is telling you to stop – by sending exhaustion signals or nausea signals, listen to your body and respect what it’s telling you.  Pushing through it might make sense if you are a teenager doing Basic Training, but otherwise its dangerous for no good reason. 

3.     There is no shame in comfort:  Don’t let anyone shame you into “being tough.”  You don’t have anything to prove to anyone, but you do need to take care of yourself no matter your age or fitness level.

4.     Safety inside:  Air conditioning is a wonderful thing! With COVID creating a safe indoor exercise environment is difficult, but also possible. At True 180 we’ve accomplished that by going above and beyond just the minimum of PPE, temperature checks, social distancing, and limiting the number of people by also sanitizing everything – including everyone’s shoes when they arrive, and paying meticulous attention to the air: clients wear PPE during exercise, we have a medical air sanitizer, a MERV 13 filter + a commercial UV-C sanitizing system in our HVAC system that is always running.  

5.     Know the signs:  The important signs that heatstroke might be approaching are – muscle cramps, nausea, headache, fatigue, irritability and/or confusion, dizziness, and rapid heart beat. If you feel any of these while in the sun, it’s time to go in­side, cool off and re-hydrate now.

Stay cool, stay safe, and stay active!

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