What to do when it’s too hot to exercise

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  • Want to carry on training despite the heatwave? Follow these five tips by Lucie Cowan, master trainer from Third Space.

    Hold off on the HIIT

    If you usually spend that golden 45 minute lunch break in the HIIT studio, trying to pack in as many burpees or tuck jumps as possible before you’ve got to be back at your desk, take the heat wave as an opportunity to discover the many benefits of mixing it up. Steady-state cardio is continuous, moderate effort training which is sustained for an extended period of time. Aim to work at a 6 out of 10 on a perceived exertion scale where 10 your max. (So that’s roughly 65–70% of your max heart rate).

    For example, try ‘Just Ride’ at Third Space. A moderate intensity cycle class, where you can simply lose yourself in the music. Not only does this type of training promote recovery, but might leave you feeling far less stressed than your usual HIIT class once you’ve been turfed back to your desk!

    Alternatively, if the thought a cardio session is unappealing, here’s the push you needed give strength training a go. Hit the free weights for some heavy squats, luges and deadlifts- You’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.


    Sorry to state the blindingly obvious, however the importance of adequate hydration is still too often overlooked. When we exercise, we lose water at an accelerated rate through faster, deeper breathing and increased sweat production, shedding our critical nutrients and electrolytes too.

    As soon as your fluid levels begin to drop below recommended amounts, you’ll probably start to feel it. Reduced energy levels, muscle cramps, constipation, and dizziness may all become apparent, which of course can lead to reduced performance in the gym. If you feel thirsty, there’s a good chance that you are already dehydrated. That said, it’s possible, even common, for adults to be dehydrated without experiencing thirst. Sip water evenly throughout the day, throughout your workout and afterwards, alongside your meals, and add some electrolytes if you’ve sweated out buckets. After your workout, try snacking on water-dense foods such as cucumber, watermelon or oranges to help the body replenish what it’s lost.

    Careful of the sweat rash

    A common problem that is frequently experienced when training in the heat is sweat rash. Perhaps you have seen your skin break out after working out and wondered, can sweat cause a rash!? The answer is indeed yes- is a fungal yeast infection caused by a yeast known as candida. This rash after sweating develops from humidity, lack of ventilation and friction. Opt for lightweight, loose clothes, and as soon as you’ve finished your workout, don’t be temped to sit and have a smoothie and a chin-wag in those sweaty clothes- get straight into the shower and into clean dry clothes ASAP.

    Avoid training at the hottest time of the day

    Heat and humidity are far higher towards the end of the day, so an early morning workout is a better option in the hot weather. Alternatively, you could exercise late in the evening due to the longer daylight hours.

    Just keep swimming

    Panic not cardio bunnies, if you have no other option but to tackle the midday training session, when the weather is too hot to even think of that treadmill, swimming is the ideal replacement. In addition to being super refreshing on a scorching day, swimming is a fantastic low impact, total body workout, building endurance, stamina and strength. All our Third Space clubs have beautiful swimming pools to make you forget you’re in central London in a heat wave!

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