Five Summer Fitness Tips

As June begins, we’re finally getting consistent pleasant weather, making outdoor cardio all the more fun. This month’s tips focus on aerobic activity.

One:

Do the cardio activity that you enjoy most! If you prefer riding a bike over walking or running, do it. Activities like cycling and inline skating are lower impact than running.

Two:

drink enough water! As the weather gets warmer, staying hydrated is essential. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people out for a jog with their earbuds and music, and NO water bottle.
Even when not exercising, drinking enough fluids is important to maintain health. Fluids carry nutrients to the cells and flush bacteria from your body, according to Harvard University Medical School’s online newsletter.

When exercising, perspiration depletes the body’s fluids. The Harvard article cited above recommends drinking 30 – 50 ounces of water gradually over the course of a day. Your needs may vary.

According to the Mayo Clinic, dehydration risks can include cramps, heat exhaustion, and urinary tract infections.

Three:

Run against traffic! It’s preferable – in many places, it’s the law – to run on the sidewalk. However, if there’s no sidewalk, please PLEASE run against traffic. According to a study done in Finland, your chances of being hit by a car are reduced 77% by running against traffic.

Four:

Everyone’s got their favorite music for the road and the gym. However, as a corollary to running against traffic, please consider leaving the headphones at home if you’re running or riding outdoors. The Finnish studyquoted above also describes the distraction risk posed by music. Be aware of your surroundings to be safe.

Five:

The American Heart Association recommends 2.5 hours per week of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity. If you’re just starting a cardio program, start conservatively and gradually add mileage. This will build your endurance and reduce the risk of an injury.