By Rachel Reddish, Director of Fitness Education & SGPT, EōS Fitness

Just because this summer is bringing on the extreme heat with record-breaking temperatures doesn’t mean Arizona residents need to give up on their summer fitness goals.

Whether you’re hitting the gym, hiking at the Tonto Natural Bridge State Park, stand-up paddle boarding at Lake Pleasant or biking along the Desert Trails bike path, staying active can be great for your health, but only if it’s done safely. If you’re not careful, you can end up suffering a heat-related injury or illness – all of which can hinder your goals. Fortunately, the EōS Fitness experts have tips to help you work out all summer long, even on the hottest of days.

Tip #1: Stay away from working out outside during the middle of the day when the sun is at its peak. The safest time to exercise is early in the morning before the sun ramps up, or at dusk for a sunset session.

Tip #2: Drink water … and then drink some more! Staying hydrated is one of the most important factors to keep your body safe when exercising in the heat. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends that you should consume 4-16 ounces of fluid every 15 to 20 minutes while exercising. The proper amount of water you should be drinking per day to keep you hydrated is about half of your bodyweight in ounces. Be sure to have water handy before, during and after your workout.

Tip #3: If you do decide to work out in the heat, adjust your routine. Instead of running on hot pavement, try biking for a nice breeze. Instead of hiking in direct sun, find a shaded trail. If necessary, just dial down the intensity level of your workout and remember, your body will tell you when it’s time to rest or stop – listen to it!

Tip #4: Try a water activity. Swimming, surfing, stand-up paddle boarding or water aerobics are all great workouts. Take a deep dive into a new water activity to stay cool, healthy and fit!

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