Everybody knows it gets hot in Florida in the summertime. Most people who have not lived a summer in the Sunshine State however don’t know about factoring in the humidity to get the Heat Index or “Feels Like” temperature.
Here are 5 ways to beat the Florida Heat:
Time outdoor activities
If you want to go for a leisurely stroll with your dog, work in the garden, or get an invigorating bike ride, don’t do it during the heat of the day. I would often get my runs in during the pre-dawn hours. Finishing up a workout to the sunrise while listening to great tunes and running past my neighbor’s intoxicating gardena bushes was a great way to start the day. When I knew the area was safe and well lit, I would also run in the late evening or night hours. I had to dodge a few raccoons and possums, but it was worth it not to melt.
It may seem so simple, yet few of us actually do it. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Drink plenty of water and sports drinks that replenished the electrolytes lost in sweating profuse amounts. Drink until your urine is clear.
Freeze water or sports drinks and carry one or two with you. I have also found that carrying a banana with you for a snack will give you an energy boost and help replenish magnesium and electrolytes. It can also prevent low blood sugar after physical activity that can cause dizziness and fatigue.
While no one likes to sweat, I can assure you that the alternative of overheating is far worse! Also, staying hydrated helps you feel more energetic. Who couldn’t use that on a hot day?
I found that when I had to train in the sun, wearing sunscreen actually made a huge difference in my core body temperature. If I wore it, I could handle the heat better. If I didn’t, I felt hotter during the run and looked like a lobster with a fabulous tee-shirt tan when I got back home.
Wear the right clothing
Choose light colors and breathable fabrics, flowing skirts, and loose fits whenever possible. Try specific sports shirts made from dry fit materials specifically manufactured to keep you cool. I steered clear of cotton or wool. The tighter, darker, and heavier my clothes were, the hotter I felt. I wear sunglasses or hats to protect my eyes, which served the dual purpose of keeping me from squinting and achieving the cool factor.
Try to time your outdoor activities early or late in the day to avoid the hottest times of the day. Seek out trees to shield out the sun or breezy areas for ventilation. There are also products you can leave in your freezer and then tie to various parts of your body (neck, back, wrist, and head) to keep cool.
The sun is intense in Florida. But, with proper planning, you don’t have to wither. Don’t hide away in your AC, get out and enjoy your state! You can still experience the amazing beauty and sunshine of paradise in comfort with just a bit of creativity! After all, where else can you get this much free Vitamin D?