A really important warning for those who exercise at an athletic level or strive to, in really hot weather that you can actually DIE from doing that….
(Picture of me, circa either 2004,2005 or 2006)
Important Disclaimers: I am NOT a clinically trained medical professional i.e. a physician. Nor am I a currently licensed as a Certified Personal Trainer like I was from 2005-2007.
When it comes to exercise at any time for any human being, should be cleared for exercise by a physician who treats you in person and it still could help when starting out to those who are professional athletes, to still get evaluated, supervised and advised by Certified Personal Trainers and/or Exercise Physiologists.
But the reason why I am writing this blog and why I think my opinion is still needed as a former trainer, will be clear, from a medical activist point of view. Thanks!!!
There is a lot of things I used to do, both cardio and strength training to get that above body, 15 years ago.
The one thing I did NOT do once I started working out at an athletic level both before and after getting my certification, as a personal trainer, was work out outdoors during a heat wave.
It had NOTHING at the time to do with the fact I had already had gastric bypass complications and issues with really bad labs, super low blood pressure and reactive hypoglycemia and those pesky gastrointestinal bleeds, as the endorphin high alone, was worth my workouts.
It had everything to do with the fact, that I knew that in addition to having to worry about increased risk dehydration and heat stroke, I also knew that it could increase my risk for exercise induced hyponatremia, that I couldn’t necessarily self diagnose, even with formal training, when in that state.
And I wasn’t going to risk it.
It’s a whole new different world now and I can understand in the digital era and in times of influencers, the multitude of reasons why people stay pretty faithful to their fitness regimens, to keep up with their fitness goals.
What I don’t understand is why anyone has to do that in extreme weather, OUTSIDE, when professional athletes have died in camp workouts and during marathons during heat waves.
And a former NFL Super Bowl champion Mitch Petrus died last Thursday night due to heatstroke, after working during the day outside.
SO, this is why I am gently reminding people that it’s not safe to be super active, even for those who are athletic when it’s super hot out and it could potentially be fatal.
But again, we are in a different era than when I was in my fitness heyday, that’s why I’m chiming in as someone’s who’s currently a fat former disabled activist who’s credentialing as a CPT lapsed more than 12 years ago.
We live in a digital society that people think it’s okay to shame people for being fatter or thinner than they should be in the digital era, where thousands of people at once, can be subjected to hatred on what they look like.
I didn’t want to write this blog, truthfully.
I am better suited to activism where in the case where heat stroke could be a threat to vulnerable people without a voice, need to hear about the warnings.
But the public, law enforcement and media is doing a good job informing them of that.
Unfortunately, I and no one else should think that there is privilege in a case where people are able to execute actions that could be fatal to them, regardless of where they fall on the socio-economic and fitness level spectrum.
And hyponatremia is just not talked about as much as it should be.
So hear/here is your warning, if you want or choose to start or maintain some kind of fitness goals for yourself and do that when it’s oppressively hot outside, actually outside, do what you need to do, but heed the disclaimers above, that it could be fatal to you, regardless of how physically fit one is.
OR find an air conditioned place to exercise in.
Certain signs that the body gives should be heeded when in distress.
Feeling nauseous, lightheaded, headache regardless of temperature should ALWAYS be a sign to stop a workout or any kind of activity outside regardless of temperature.
The issue where exercise induced hyponatremia gets tricky, is usually it happens in those who knows about the dangers of dehydration and heatstroke, when working out when it’s super hot outside, but don’t realize that being overly hydrated can cause EIH and it can have devastating consequences, such as cardiac, renal and neurological failure, if not death.
The chance of it happening to you?
Probably the same or less as needing a gastric bypass reversal or injuring your rotator cuff on a “Baby Annie” when testing out to get a certification ( one has to have a certification in CPR, before testing out for a certification as personal trainer, and because as a parent, I just got recertified in CPR and First Aid for babies, children and adults in that era, as I had a young child in home ), both things which have happened to me.
That doesn’t mean it’s not worth a warning that it’s not necessary to work out when it’s super hot outside and that we need to discuss this more.
So that innocent people don’t die / aren’t catastrophically changed physically and cognitively, as this is completely preventable, as far as when and where to work out is concerned.
And I make no apologies for wanting and wishing that a lot of heavy duty marathons/intense exercise events weren’t in the middle of Summer.
There is no privilege in anyone, if they are dead!!!
So let’s at least have a conversation about it, ok?
Note: Anything that’s NOT constructive, will NOT be posted.
Also Note: You aren’t going to convince me that a special population of people, i.e. like people who are Obese who want to work out need to in any circumstances, like highlighted above, because their Obesity is more immediately urgent to rectify.
So, don’t go there, OK???