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Staying fit while avoiding danger this summer

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Updated: 6/21/2013 11:28 am
COLUMBUS, Miss. (WTVA) -- Summer has arrived, and as the days grow longer and warmer, more people are heading outside for their workouts.

A wellness professional stresses the importance of taking precautions while exercising during higher temperatures.

“Stay hydrated,” said Marion McEwen, wellness coordinator for the Stark Recreation Center at Mississippi University for Women. She said cold water is best to drink because it is absorbed faster into the stomach.

When exercising in hot weather you can easily lose up to a quart of water an hour, according to Discovery Fit & Health.

Drink water before, during and after exercising.

Appropriate clothing also is important, McEwen added. “It is best to wear loose, light colored clothing," she said, noting that looser clothes allow circulation of air between your skin and the environment.

And, don’t forget your sunscreen and sunglasses. Apply SPF 15 sunscreen at least 30 minutes before exercising outdoors. Exposure to direct and indirect sunlight over many years increases your risk of developing skin cancer, according to Discovery Fit & Health.

As for increasing your energy before a workout, McEwen recommended eating good carbohydrates such as fruits and vegetables.

When available, McEwen suggests exercising indoors by taking a group fitness class. "You will still get a great workout and even sweat too.”

Finally, McEwen said to use common sense when working out in the heat. "Listen to your body. You must acclimate yourself to warmer temps.”

For more information on group fitness classes at The W during the summer months, visit: www.muw.edu/recreation.
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