• Question: Do we burn more calories doing the same exercise in warm weather as cool weather? For instance, if you ride a bike on the same route and it is 65 degrees do you burn more on a different day when it is 95 degrees? My assumption is that you would since the body is needing to expend energy to cool itself. Thanks Jeff!


    From Erik K.
    July 14, 2010

  • Great question Erik! Your assumption is correct. Adam and I have read some recent articles on exercising in the heat/cold and you will in fact burn more calories exercising in the heat. Your body obviously has to work harder to keep your overall body temperature down and pump blood to the working muscles. Also, the reverse is true working out in colder climates. Our body has to keep itself warm, therefore we use more energy. The calorie burn is not extremly different, yet temperatures do play a role. Again thanks for asking let me know if you ever have any others!

    From Jeff
    July 15, 2010

Sizzle Through Summer Exercise

Summer is a time to get out and boost our activity level, but as temperatures rise, exercising outdoors can become a challenge.  Get the most out of your summer workouts by following these guidelines.


The best part about summer is getting to enjoy the extra daylight and warm weather.  It’s the perfect time of year to take advantage of and try new outdoor activities such as tennis, biking, kayaking and paddle boarding.  But as the temperatures rise, it’s important to practice heat safety precautions.   


Exercising in warm weather puts added stress on our heart and lungs, and as outside temperatures increase, our body temperature follows suit. This adds a whole new element to which our bodies are not regularly accustomed. To adjust to the heat, more blood must circulate through the skin, which in effect leaves less blood for our working muscles. As a result, our heart rate increases much more rapidly than usual.


To sizzle through summer exercise we not only have to make it fun, but it is important to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion. Watch out for any weakness, muscle cramps, headaches, dizziness, nausea or a rapid heartbeat. If you happen to experience any of these symptoms, immediately get out of the sun, seek water, and above all stop exercising!


Here are seven ways to never overheat and still enjoy the summer sunshine:

1.  Clothing check—Before you head out for a morning walk or some afternoon calisthenics, make sure to cover yourself in a loose polyester blended shirt. Cotton soaks up the sweat, but Dri-FIT shirts tend to focus on keeping you dry. Nike Dri-FIT and COOLMAX® are popular brands.

2.  Slap on the sunscreen—No matter what, it’s important to lather up. SPF 30 or higher is recommended. Besides, if we end up getting sun-burned, we’re probably not going to want to exercise the next day.

3.  Hydrate!!!—Make sure that a few hours before exercise you drink 2–3 cups of water. Our bodies can lose as much as one quart of water during an hour of vigorous exercise, regardless of the heat. As a general recommendation for summer fitness, drink every 10 to 15 minutes.

4.  Seek shade—If you do happen to be exercising mid-day, find a local park or area where it’s shaded. This will keep you out of the sun and you’ll certainly experience a more enjoyable workout.

5.  Check your heart rate—Wear a heart rate monitor or manually check in with your pulse frequently.

6.  Head out at the right time—Try to wake up early and knock out the day’s workout. You’ll not only be good for the entire day, but temperatures are generally much cooler.

7.  Switch to the water—Dive into water classes or take up lap swimming for the summer. This is an excellent alternative to land exercise and a surefire way to beat the heat.

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