With extreme heat alerts throughout Toronto and the GTA, we realize you might want some tips on how to beat the heat and stay fit.
- Don’t go outside unless you have to. Extreme heat alerts are not to be taken lightly. You should pay attention to them, and don’t venture outdoors unless you have to. This includes running or walking outside. During an extreme heat alert, it’s easy to experience heat stroke if you are outdoors. Symptoms of heat stroke include (but are not limited to) a lack of sweat, nausea, confusion, and muscle cramping. Due to the confusion, you may not understand that what you are experiencing is different from regular exertion. As such, it’s better to do your run in the gym – ideally here at WFCC! – where it’s air conditioned.
- Draw the curtains and close the blinds. The easiest, simplest way to cool your home is to make sure that heat doesn’t get in — and that includes heat from sunlight. When you know it’s going to be a hot day, cover your windows to provide a screen. You’ll be saving on air conditioning and keeping your textiles and furnishings from fading. (And if that doesn’t keep you cool enough? Run the A/C full blast; we’ll forgive you!)
- Stay hydrated. This goes beyond just drinking water. Water is essential, and you should drink as much of it as you can, but you can augment your hydration by eating foods with a high water content. These include watermelon, cucumber, tomatoes, grapes, and celery. A nice gazpacho, of either the tomato or watermelon variety, can go a long way to cooling you down and hydrating you, while also keeping your healthy eating on track. If you like it spicy, naengmyeon(a Korean cold noodle soup with pear and cucumbers) might be just the thing.
- Set up a timer and thermostat on your air conditioner. If you can program your air conditioner to start up once the heat climbs past intolerable levels, you’ll be able to set it and forget it. Also, remember to clean your air conditioner and its filters to get the best value out of it. Look for low-energy options in your air conditioner’s menu: you may have a setting for de-humidifying, which will take away some of the heat’s burden.
- Take a cool bath or shower before bed. It’s tough to sleep when it’s too hot, and sleep deprivation has a genuine impact on health. So before you hit the sheets, try to cool off. Leave your hair at least a little damp, so it can continue cooling you as you try to rest. With enough sleep, you should feel ready to tackle your day, and your workout.