For most people, working out in the summer heat means lots and lots of perspiration and chances of dehydration... and they're not too far from the truth. That being said, before you heed the temptation to head for the comfort of an air-conditioned fitness studio, you might want to hold your horses for a bit!
Working out when the summer heat hits, offers 5 shocking benefits that may have you re-thinking your indoor training plans. Those benefits we have outlined in this blog post and you're just a 2-minute read away from learning to maximize the benefits of soaring temperatures this summer.
Here’s what you gain from working out in the summer heat
5 Benefits of Exercising in the Summer Heat
Improves Your Body's Ability to Cool Itself.
Exercising in the heat causes the blood flow to your skin to increase which in turn improves your body's ability to cool down. Over time and continuous heat exercising, the body adapts, thus becoming more responsive to the demands of heat workouts. This way you will simply be accomplishing more in your day to day workouts. Working out in the summer heat can also make you more comfortable and confident getting outside during the hotter months of the year.
If you are in a senior citizen reading this, you don't want to race your heart on the first day. Start slow and be sure to track your heart rate while exercising. This should come in handy for tracking heart rate and blood pressure while exercising.
More Beneficial than Altitude Training!
Experts and elite athletes rave about the physical and mental benefits of altitude training. What you may not know is exercising in the heat is actually more beneficial than altitude training. A study conducted in 2010 study showed that the physiological adaptations from heat acclimation include increased skeletal muscle force generation, muscle glycogen sparing, reduced blood lactate and oxygen uptake at a given power output, expansion of the plasma volume, increased ventricular compliance, improved performance across a range of temperatures and improvement in myocardial efficiency.
All of which are outcomes of exercising in the summer heat, that rival and perhaps outclass those of altitude training approaches.
Better Heart Rate and Blood Circulation
Every time you exercise in the hot weather, the stress load of your training increases. And because the human body naturally responds by increasing blood circulation and sweating, it becomes easier for people who work out in the summer heat to adapt to working out in the cold winter.
In essence, working out in the summer heat gives you a greater chance of survival in the flaming hot weather of the Sahara Desert or the extremely cold weather of the Arctic - not that you'd be going to either of those places soon but you get the idea.
Engaging in as little as five sessions of exercise in the summer heat is enough to help improve your heart rate and sweat rate.
Increases your cardiovascular capacity, Vo2 max and Lactate Threshold.
If you want to set personal performance records this year, then you should take advantage of training in summer’s intense heat. Just be sure to heed our advice on tips to staying safe while at it.
Having said that, it is important to note that you will not immediately experience an increase in Vo2 max and lactate threshold as these take longer to develop and require continuous heat exercising. However, a more immediate benefit is an increase in your cardiovascular capacity as your heart adapts to intense heat training.
By extension, you are able to do intense work for longer periods of time.
Increases your Psychological Tolerance
Fitness experts are quick to hit their clients with the "No Pain, No Gain" mantra. So many times has this been said that it has become somewhat cliche albeit no less true. Training requires that you get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Exercising in the heat forces your brain and body to work harder while you complete your workout. Coincidentally, your psychological tolerance to several related and even unrelated situations improves through heat training.
Did you learn something new? Feel free to spread the love!
Share what you've learned with a loved one. You could save a life!
Now that you know the benefits of exercising in the summer heat, you should take some time to learn how to stay safe while at it. In this blog post, we've outlined 3 Super Tips To Stay Safe While Exercising In The Summer Heat.