The thought of exercising during the summer in the UAE makes most of us hot and bothered, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Summer shouldn’t be a deterrent when it comes to exercising in the fresh air, provided you stay hydrated.
It’s important to keep moving during the high temperatures and a sport such as cycling is ideal. You can pick your own pace, whether riding round the park with the kids, or on a gentle ride with friends. In order to help your own body adjust, make sure you adapt gradually to a hot environment. Be sure to ride early or late in the day, when it’s coolest, and use your down time to get used to the heat—try Bikram “hot” yoga or a sauna.
If you are wondering about staying hydrated make sure you take in fluids even before you get on the bike. Drink 8 ounces as you are getting out the door. During your ride, try to drink at least 8 to 12 ounces by sipping fluids every 20 minutes (make sure you sip, not gulp, to avoid stomach discomfort).
Another use for water is pouring it on yourself. You can get a similar effect more efficiently by soaking a bandana with cold water and tying it around your head under your helmet. Cooling down your head will help cool your entire body.
Motivate yourself by arranging to join others, there are a number of free, gently paced organised rides throughout the UAE during the week.
If you are still umming and aahing, there’s also a great range of indoor training available and it’s a fun way to get in some structured training, especially with the help of indoor cycling.
Hot weather biking isn’t for everyone, but if you put some thought into how you dress, take it slow, and always have water and snacks on hand, you can do it — and you’ll probably even love it.