I survived my first summer in Texas and here’s what I learned! Read the top five tips from this experience that apply to life itself outside of the Texas sun. These exercise tips help with hot and cold weather. Whether (haha) it’s hot weather and high humidity or cold, windy, and damp weather.
First let me say: this is my first time living south of Columbus, Ohio. I grew up in western Pennsylvania and then traveled through the midwest bypassing Indiana. From the hills and valleys of Pennsylvania to the flatlands and trees of Ohio, to the bitter cold and windy winters in Milwaukee of Lake Michigan, and lastly to Chicagoland halfway between Milwaukee and Chicago. I experienced ice in Ohio, the snow that didn’t melt until May in Milwaukee, and a guessing game of whether we would have ice or snow in Chicagoland depending on how the wind blew. Now take away all of that and experience heat and humidity!
Learn to adapt to cold and hot weather.
I promise this isn’t a post to gripe about the extreme weather. When we moved to Texas it was mid-April which meant heavy rain and comfortable temperatures. As the temperature began to rise I found myself needing to acclimate. My body needed to learn how to sweat quickly so I could cool myself down and hydration was key!
If you live in the north and enjoy walking outside, wear plenty of layers! This allows you to remove a layer when your body adapts to the temperature as you warm up.
99% of adult problems are solved with hydration. Tired? Drink water. Thirsty? Drink water. Have a headache? Drink water. Feel weak? Drink water. When the body is made of 60% water, it only makes sense to drink a lot of water! Add in high heat and humidity and that water intake needs to increase even more!
Drink fluids that have electrolytes to keep you hydrated. In the cold, snowy and extreme weather it’s important to keep up with hydration too. Warm water with lemon and cinnamon was a favorite of mine plus tea. After a cold walk outside I looked forward to a hot cup of coffee or hot chocolate.
Know your limits for hot and cold weather.
Currently, I walk outside for an hour. That hour allows me to clear my mind and I’m capable of walking that long. My schedule also allows for that length of time. When the extreme weather temperatures were in the 90’s and 100’s (holy moly!) an hour-long walk wasn’t possible. And the heat rises throughout the day so walks needed to happen early and for shorter periods of time.
The same goes for your exercise minutes and in cold weather. How much time can you schedule for movement? How long can your body handle? What is the coldest or hottest temperature you can handle? If you only have a half hour available, walk twice during your day! With the sun setting earlier in winter make plans during your lunch hour for a walk, especially if you work from home.
Get creative indoors!
Summer in the south is like winter in the north. In fact, Southerners travel to the north for summer, known as sunbirds. When the heat makes you feel like you’re melting just by walking to the mailbox, you stay inside more often. Winter is tough in the north when the snow doesn’t melt until May or the air is so cold you feel it in your bones no matter how many layers you wear. This means indoor workouts like Pilates and activities inside such as reading, games, movies, crafts during extreme weather. These are great activities in winter up north.
It doesn’t last forever.
Lastly, it’s one season. The extreme weather will change and so will activities, food, and life. Look for something that brings you joy in your day and embrace it. In the summer it sometimes meant a mango popsicle or iced coffee. In winter it means hot chocolate and snuggling under a blanket. And on other days and seasons, it can mean talking to a close friend or reading a good book!
Sign up for my weekly newsletter to receive more tips for staying active with Pilates! You’ll receive a video with 5 exercises to keep your body warm during winter and it’s a quick workout to do indoors during summer.