Summer is almost here, and that means enjoying the great outdoors. Whether you enjoy hiking, biking, running, or swimming, exercising outside has many benefits. Before you head to the great outdoors, here are some things to remember to help you safely enjoy exercising outside.
Even if it’s cloudy, make sure to wear sunscreen. A sunburn can occur in less than 15 minutes to unprotected skin. Wear at least a 30 SPF and make sure to reapply, especially if you sweat or are in the water.
An important part of exercising safely outside is to stay hydrated. No matter what your activity level, you should make sure you consume plenty of water, especially if it is hot or humid. If you find that you are thirsty, you are already reaching dehydration, so remember to drink water before you hit that point. Other liquids, like coffee, tea, energy drinks, and alcohol, contain dehydrating properties, and are not ideal alternatives to good, old, regular water.
If you are staying out past dusk, it’s a good idea to keep a light source with you. Whether a flashlight, head lamp, or your mobile device, not only will a flashlight help you see, it will also help you be seen by other people.
Wear Appropriate Clothing
Wear clothing appropriate for the weather. If it is going to be hot and sunny, wear clothing that will wick away sweat. Many clothes come with sun blocking capabilities as well. If the weather might change, consider wearing layers to adapt to variable conditions. And if you’ll be out past dusk, wear colors can are highly visible to stay safe around vehicles.
Along with weather-appropriate clothing, make sure you also select activity-appropriate footwear. For example, if you plan on walking through rocky or uneven terrain, selecting something with ankle support will help protect your joints as you walk. Running outside on pavement is different than running on grass or a trail, so pick shoes that are optimized for your activity. Your workout will be much more enjoyable if your feet are safe and comfortable while doing it.
Take Your Phone and ID
It might be inconvenient to carry around a phone or ID while exercising, but it’s important to have a means of communicating in case of an emergency. There are many lightweight ways to carry small, personal items with you while exercising, like arm bands, waist packs, and small backpacks. Some of these packs also come with other great features, like hydration packs, and solar chargers!
No matter where you are going, and what you are taking with you, make sure to tell someone where you are going in case of emergency.
And if joint pain is holding you back from your favorite outdoor activities, make an appointment with us. We’re here to help.