Healthy Bodies
  • Southeast Wisconsin
  • June 2013
Written by  Brian Bankenbusch, CSCS, CES, PES

Get your summer sweat on!

After a long, cold winter, the weather is finally starting to warm up and you are ready to get outside. Summertime offers some great outdoor exercise opportunities. You can try biking, swimming or playing beach volleyball to get active or to push through a plateau you may be experiencing. But before heading out the door to trek that hiking hill, remember two things: make safety a priority and keep weight training in your schedule.

Three important safety tips for exercising outside are: 1) protect your skin and eyes: 2) stay hydrated; and 3) know your route or surroundings.

Sunscreen and sunglasses are a must when working out outside because the sun emits harmful ultraviolet rays. It’s possible for anyone to get a sunburn, no matter if you have light or dark skin. You can even get burned on a cloudy day. Sunglasses are just as important as sunscreen for eye protection from the harmful UV rays. Always apply sunscreen about 30 minutes before you head outside, so it has time to absorb into the skin and protect it. If you are outside for a prolonged time, make sure to reapply the sunscreen.

Staying hydrated while working out is important, especially on hot days. The body loses a lot of fluids through sweat during exercise. It can happen even faster on a hot and humid day. It is important to drink at least 20 ounces of water before your workout, 2-3 ounces for every 20 minutes of exercise, and at least 20 ounces after each workout to prevent dehydration. Also, to help stay hydrated, avoid exercising during “peak” sun hours from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Knowing the bike or run route you are taking is important for safety. You don’t want to be caught on a busy highway trying to cross traffic or avoid cars. There are many biking, running and walking paths that can be found all over the city and suburbs. If you plan on hiking, make sure you have a map and have some knowledge of the woods or trails you are exploring. The better prepared you are, the better your workout will be.

Even though there are many fun ways to exercise outdoors, a majority of them are cardio-based and body weight exercises. Weight training is still an important part of health and wellness. A good weight training workout can be challenging outside, so don’t forget to hit the gym 2-3 times a week for a weight training workout. All that hard work you put in during the winter months to sculpt those muscles shouldn’t go to waste during the summer.

The summer is a great time to try new activities to keep your fitness level up. You can finally get out of the gym for a while and get your heart pumping in the water, in the woods or in the neighborhood. Just remember to protect yourself against the weather and environment. Also, the gym should remain in your schedule during the week. Keep it a fun and safe summer, and keep those muscles strong!



Brian Bankenbusch, CSCS, CES, PES, is the owner of Epic Fitness & Sports Performance LLC. He is a certified strength and conditioning specialist with over 10 years of experience training high school and collegiate athletes. He is devoted to bringing proper education and superior program design to the community. Brian is also a certified corrective exercise specialist, wellness coach and personal trainer. For more information, visit or call 414-464-2156.

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