Now that the temp’s in the U.S. have consistently climbed above 65 degrees Fahrenheit, everyone wants to enjoy exercising outdoors. On Your Marks, Get Set . . . Before sprinting through the door, take a few safety measures first:
1) Footwear – I highly recommend going to a specialty shop to get your shoes and feet assessed prior to exercising. Look for a store that assesses your foot patterns while moving (walking/running). It may take 20 minutes, but save you months of agony suffering from pain associated with improper footwear (plantar faschiitis, shin splints, knee, back, and neck issues).
2) Water – Drink a minimum of 24 ounces before and after exercise. The human body cannot function properly without water.
3) Heart Rate Monitor – When the temperatures and humidity rise, it’s imperative at any age to use a heart rate monitor during high intensity exercise. Look for a model with excellent consumer ratings that include both a watch and chest strap. (I like the Polar FT4 and FT7 models and encourage purchasing on Amazon.)
4) Doctor Consent – If it has been a year or more since you’ve seen a doctor and take prescribed or over-the-counter medications, be sure to check-in for a physical.
For more information on safety measures associated with exercising in the heat, read Keeping Cool in Hot Weather by the Mayo Clinic.