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Hot Weather Training

Race Walking > Training

Exercising in hot & humid conditions

The general medical advice is when it is really too hot to safely exercise outside it may be wise to stay indoors - especially if you suffer from any respiratory problems, such as asthma.
Watch the weather reports and cut back on your training if conditions are likely to be sustained for several days : don't take unnecessary risks with your health.  
If you can't work out in an air-conditioned gym, avoid the hottest parts of the day and plan your training sessions for early in the morning or evening. And drink plety of water!

Heat exhaustion and sunstroke may creep up unawares! Symptoms include:

  • Nausea

  • Weakness

  • Dizziness

  • Thirst

  • Dry skin

  • Fatigue

  • Confusion

  • Excessive sweating

  • Dry mouth / mucous membranes

  • Increased heart rate and breathing

If you need to train to maintain fitness, try swimming or gym work.
  • Don't warm up in the full direct rays of the sun. You'll get too hot!  Warm up in the shade.
  • Drinking fluids during exercise helps to improve heart function, maintain kidney function and will also lower your body temperature. Remember that sugary drinks will be dehydrating. Hydrate well before you start  and drink plenty of water at regular intervals rather than all in one go after a session.
  • Prevent sweating and overheating by wearing loose, lightweight and breathable kit;  some of the more 'technical' clothing may be more effective in a lighter colour, because it  reflects the light better.

What to do if someone becomes sick from the following:
Heat Cramps:
Get the person to a cooler place and have him/ her rest in a comfortable position.  Lightly stretch the affected muscle and replenish fluids.  Give a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes.   Do not give liquids with alcohol or caffeine in them, as they can cause further dehydration, making conditions worse.

Heat Exhaustion:
Get the person out of the heat and into a cooler place. Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet cloths, such as towels or sheets.  If the person is conscious, give cool water to drink.  Make sure the person drinks slowly.  Give a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes.  Let the person rest in a comfortable position, and watch carefully for changes in his or her condition.

Heat Stroke:
Call 999 or your local emergency number immediately.  Move the person to a cooler place.  Quickly cool the body.  Immerse the person in a cool bath, or wrap wet sheets around the body and fan it.  Watch for signals of breathing problems.  Keep the person lying down and continue to cool the body any way you can.  If the victim refuses water, is vomiting, or there are any changes in the level of consciousness, do not give anything to eat or drink.
Be safe in the sun
Over 75,000 people each year in the UK are diagnosed with skin cancer. Find out how to keep safe from sun damage and reduce the risk of skin cancer. Sun damage isn’t limited to holidays in the sun. It can happen when you’re not expecting it, for example, going for a walk or sitting in your garden. Sun protection is something you need to be aware of every day in the summer, whether on holiday or at home, you can protect yourself by following the SunSmart messages.
These are:
  • Spend time in the shade between 11am and 3pm.
  • Make sure you never burn.
  • Aim to cover up with a T-shirt, hat and sunglasses.
  • Then use factor 20+ sunscreen.

Also report mole changes or unusual skin growths to your doctor. (see article on Melanoma)

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