With favorable weather comes the urge to work out outside. One can get the most benefit from workouts by doing them outside, in the midst of fresh air and nature. However, with the onset of the pandemic, most of the workouts have been restricted within the four walls of the home.
Now that things are finally opening up and in some countries vaccinated people can roam around without masks, it can be said that outside workouts are once more in vogue. But are they as good and beneficial as they sound?
Let’s find out below.
Usually, when we travel, it is with the help of maps so that we don’t get lost but what about when you are working out or you are out on a hike? Chances are you won’t have your map with you and there is so much stuff only you can carry while going for a workout session.
Keeping your phone is distracting so the only device you will have access to if you are into monitoring your workouts, is your fitness monitor which let’s admit is not that helpful if you are going to explore your new surroundings. All these above scenarios point to one direction only and that is getting lost during a session. This is a problem if you don’t know your surroundings like the back of your hand.
This however can be a boon if you want to explore a new locality and are confident that you can find your way back to your place no matter what the situation is. Even if it is a boon or a curse, it is still a hazard that makes working out in the open a bit dangerous and adds a touch of mystery.
So, if you plan on going out and working out in the open, don’t ditch your phone because no matter what the situation is, it always comes in handy.
Skin Cancer has been on the rise ever since global warming became a threat and the more the year’s pass, the more the Ozone hole looms over us, as a threat of our own making. The Ozone hole lets the UV rays pass and those rays are the main reason behind skin cancer, a disease that has a cure but is expensive, and chances of survival are really low.
Working out in the open demands more exposure to the sun, as summer approaches (in the northern hemisphere at least) and that means chances of getting a sunburn or skin cancer are higher than ever as you will be sweating and your skin is vulnerable if you do not regulate how much time you spend out in the open and if you do not take the proper steps to ensure the protection of your skin.
Use Sunscreen with higher SPF to protect yourself from the harmful UV rays and since during workout, you will be sweating, re-application is needed.
When choosing sunscreen for your skin, it is best to choose one based on your skin type and how many hours you plan on spending in the sun. In the summer months, it is best to work out in the confines of the gym but it is hard to resist the opportunity of letting your skin absorb all that Vitamin D. So, to battle this hazard, make sure to take care of your skin.
Is there any way better to combat the heat than drinking tons of water? The answer is no. When you are working out, you will sweat which will ultimately burn the calories. It is essential that during workouts, you drink water or any drink that has some water content to make sure you are not dehydrated.
Working out in the open, specifically in the heat, ensures that you sweat more and in that way, burn more calories. This logic sounds too good to be true.
Since you will be sweating more, you need to make sure that you drink enough water so the water balance in your body stays at the normal level and does not go to that point where you will have to suffer from dehydration.
Keeping track of the water level in your body is quite hard and you will be surprised to learn that more than you know, people who work out in the open fall prey to dehydration. So, it can be said that dehydration is a hazard when it comes to working out in the open.
However, there are a few steps that you can take to ensure that you are never dehydrated. The first is, to drink enough water. The question arises now, how will you know how much water is enough water? The answer to that is, drink more than you sweat. The second step is that, do not work out in the open for too long. Half an hour in the sun is enough, even in the wee hours of the morning.
Heatstroke is probably the most common hazard of all when it comes to working out in the open. Even if you are not working out, chances are you will experience one if you go outside and the sun feels hotter than it ever did and you start sweating profusely.
So, you probably have a chance of suffering from either a heat stroke or heat exhaustion if you take part in an outside workout session. To make sure that you don’t suffer from any, don’t work out when the mercury starts to rise, and even if you want to do it out in the open, work out when the sun is on its way to rise, that is at the wee hours of the morning.
But let’s assume that you overslept and missed the time for the session but you don’t want to skip it entirely.
In that scenario to avoid a heat stroke, wear cotton clothes that are loose-fitting and allow the body to breathe, and keep a cold cloth (cloth soaked in water or cold water) on your shoulder in order to make sure that your body is cold enough.
These are the ways you can combat one but it is still recommended not to take part in one if you are experiencing the symptoms of a heat stroke as that can be a potential threat to your life. Work out in the gym maybe, but definitely not outside.
The outside air seems like the freshest air to breathe but more than not, it is not the case. Pollution has made everything murky, be it the air, water, or soil. Going by that logic, the outside air is not safe all the time. It is home to car exhaust, factory fumes, ash, construction dust, and many other particles that can cause serious damage to your lungs if it is overexposed to the polluted air for a long time.
Wearing a mask during a session does not seem like a viable option because you will have trouble breathing.
Then, what is the solution? There is no such solution to be exact but you can try working out in areas that have a lot of trees so that you know the oxygen that your lungs are breathing in is better than an area with just buildings and factories.
The other way to avoid this hazard is to work out in the early hours of the morning when factories are closed and the streets do not have that many cars. The only way to avoid this hazard completely is to not work out in the open at all.
If you are hiking, this is the chief hazard you should avoid because it is a potential threat to your life. Hiking leaves you vulnerable to the allergens that can cause your allergies to flare up and if you do not have the proper medication with yourself, chances are you will not get proper help on the trail unless another fellow hiker stumbles on you.
So, while hiking, carry your allergy medications and if you are allergic to pollen, avoid hiking during flowering seasons such as spring. You can read a copy of the Amry Survival book to be better prepared if you come in contact with something like poison ivy.
The other hazard that you must avoid is coming face to face with wildlife. You suffering from injuries is a potential reason for being cautious in the presence of wildlife.
To ensure that you do not come in contact with them, look at the guidebooks provided during hikes and avoid the places termed “dangerous” and do not go hiking in deep forests, hike in areas with sparse vegetation so that you have a clear sight of what’s on the other side. Hike with a group and learn how to deal with wildlife in situations if you come in contact with them beforehand so that you and your fellow hikers do not aggravate them.
There are apps that help you determine the footprints of animals and tell you they are predatory are not like “Scats and Tracks”, download it before a hike.
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