The big shift out of town has started as many of us head off on our annual trips to the sun to catch up and bond with friends and family, while in London many visitors are getting the opportunity to experience the city in all its glory during the Olympic month. During these festive times, no matter how much you’re loving the sun, it can so easily zap your energy, leaving you drained or feeling low for a couple of days, especially if combined with alcohol.
When the weather is hot, you need to be careful about over heating with exercise, especially if you live the city, where heat tends to get trapped because of the buildings and no cooling sea breezes.
If you’re hitting the beach or villas of the Mediterranean, lounging by the pool may be your first choice, but after a couple of days could prove a little boring. So you could try:
– Walking, stretching, swimming, light jog and cycling are all good options for morning exercise.
– Avoid aerobic exercise from mid-day until around 4pm and even then the pool is the best bet to cool off from sunbathing.
– The sun increases the intensity of your workout so don’t expect to perform at your usual level – slow down the intensity of your cardio workouts by reducing speed, but make sure you still work out regularly.
– Drink plenty of fluids, especially water and not just cocktails, both during and after a session, to compensate for excess water loss.
– If you’re working out in an air-conditioned gym, then you can take the intensity higher a couple of times a week.
Over-heating the body with too much exercise causes inflammation and heat exhaustion – not a pleasant feeling, especially when this is the ideal time of the year to get outside and try different activities such as water sports, yoga, cycling or trekking around woodlands or the park. For those coming to the UK or visiting Nordic countries, you could not have picked a better year to get fit, as these cooler climes allow you to exercise without fear of over-heating.
Dare I mention alcohol? It’s so easy to forget how much you’re actually consuming when you start drinking early in the day! I’ve always found it easier to control if I make drinking into a treat – even on holiday – to stop burn-out by early evening. Again, drinking too much alcohol without enough water can interrupt your sleep and simply make you feel fuzzy for days, as your liver works hard to recover.
Food-wise, the temptation is to eat lots of barbecued meat or fatty foods as you take a break from your regular diet. But this is precisely the time to eat more raw foods that are rich in enzymes and nutrients – Things like vegetables and their juices, salads and fruit. These foods with their high water content really help to cool body temperature and, coupled with low fat protein, it will mean that you’ll be sure to arrive back from holiday with a lean, tanned and rested body – what more could you want for the start of the Fall!