Summer is finally here, and with it comes sunny weather and good energy. There’s nothing better than taking advantage of the warm weather by heading out for a little exercise and the accompanying endorphin rush.
If you’ve made plans to hit the gym this summer, we’ve put together a list of summer workout essentials to keep you in the zone and at peak performance.
While you can technically work out in anything, the fact of the matter is that you feel better and perform better in the right sort of gear. This is especially true during the summer, where temperatures can get the best of you even in a well-ventilated gym. When it gets warm, sometimes that old cotton T-shirt just isn’t going to cut it.
Our previous article on ‘How Wearing the Right Gear Can Transform Your Workout Routine?’ discusses the key things to look for when picking out your activewear. You’ll want something that offers you a full range of motion, without sacrificing safety and durability.
Moisture-wicking is also a pretty important feature, especially during the summer. If you’re working out inside, just pick something that’s comfortable, breathable, and won’t get caught on gym equipment. For joggers, runners, and athletes who play outside, you’ll need gear that offers good sun and heat protection, too.
Any type of sustained physical activity will require proper rest and care. While rest days are definitely part of that, you can also help protect your body through means like compression wear.
According to Men’s Health, compression wear is supposed to keep your muscles supported and improve your circulation by compressing them with skin-tight fabrics like spandex. Compression wear improves your performance, allowing you to move faster and more efficiently overall.
It also plays a key part in workout recovery. Research shows that compression gear can help clear lactic acid- which makes you feel sore and tired- more quickly, allowing you to workout without fear of horrible body aches the day after.
Health boosters can take a variety of forms, from powdered supplements to protein bars. Physical activity like exercise can burn a lot of energy, and the only way to sustain that sort of activity is by taking in the proper nutrients.
Diet and supplementation plays an important part in fitness, but can vary from person to person depending on your goals. For example, if you’re thinking about bulking up then you’re probably going to be taking in more protein. Runners, meanwhile, will need omega-3 for recovery.
If you’re looking for a quick and convenient boost for a summer workout, Brightcore suggests an ACV gummy for important nutrients like B vitamins and antioxidants. They can also trigger weight loss benefits, which is a big plus if you want to lose some pounds.
Summer usually means one thing to athletes, and that’s heat. Sweating is a natural bodily function that’s meant to cool you down before you get overheated. While that’s nature’s way of taking care of us, it’s still pretty inconvenient to be dripping with sweat during or after a workout.
In the summertime especially, sweat can be pretty inconvenient if you’ve planned a full day ahead. Whether you’re headed to the gym, a yoga class, or a quick run, you’ll need a towel that’s light, effective, and easy to bring around.
Not sure what kind of towel to pick for your preferred activity? Verywell Fit has a list of different cooling towels, including neck gaiters, hiking towels, hoodie towels, and much more. Your towel is going to be your buddy during your hot summer workouts, so you need to make sure you get the best one.
And finally, the most important workout essential for the summer is, of course, hydration. Heat and intense physical activity can be a deadly combo if you aren’t careful.
Not drinking enough fluid could lead to a rise in body temperature and heart rate, as well as feelings of fatigue. In some extreme cases, it could even lead to heatstroke and death.
The solution? Proper hydration. Keep a jug next to you at all times, and make sure it’s regularly refilled. Experts at SportsMD recommend options like fitness waters, sports beverages, and even raw fruit juices.
Athletes should drink something light on the stomach before a workout, and aim for at least 10-12 cups of hydration daily. You should be drinking fluids before, during, and after exercise, and replenishing your electrolytes while you’re at it. Make sure you hydrate carefully- summer’s no fun with heat exhaustion, after all.