Key Components of a Summer Fitness Regimen: New Hydration Feature to Help Keep You Safe During Summer Activity
In warmer weather, people increase their exercise and outdoor activity – many do not realize that screening stations can help them reach their fitness goals as well as help keep them safe. Summer is a time when people are exercising in earnest in the hopes of achieving that beach body to be “swimsuit ready.” The warmer months in summer also finds many people engaging in “inadvertent exercise” such as walking to work to enjoy the sunshine, swimming during a beach vacation or joining a softball league. Millions of you are exercising in warmer weather without knowing your risks. As the temperature rises, so does health risk related to normal activity, especially if you aren’t hydrated.
Tracking your body stats can help you reach your fitness and health goals and help you stay safe during the warmer weather. That’s why a screening station is an important and complimentary addition to your regimen.
higi has nearly 11,000 stations across the U.S at various retail locations which measure blood pressure and other key biometrics. Many are now measuring hydration as well, a first for a self-screening station!
Exercise is great for your health but it’s imperative to include monitoring vitals in your daily health regimen and deploy certain safety steps. Exercising in the heat makes your heart work harder so you want to make sure you’re taking breaks, hydrating, and monitoring your blood pressure and heart rate regularly. It’s easy to keep track of your health with the FDA approved screening devices higi offers and the new hydration feature allows you to be extra safe and regulate your hydration accordingly.
All of our screening stations are in various easy-to-locate pharmacies like Shop Rite, Sam’s Club and Rite Aid and track these four stats: Blood Pressure, Pulse, Weight, Body Mass Index – with some stations now featuring hydration tracking. These vital biometrics are key to early detection of hypertension, diabetes and other treatable health conditions. Boundaries are age-specific and higi stations take your age into account when providing you with your health stats.
You can see the platform at www.higi.com, and learn about the fun and exciting fitness challenges we offer to help you stay engaged in tracking your health. There is also a search function that will tells you where the closest screening station is to your zip code.
Some basic tips on how to monitor your health as well as the advantages of registering for the higi community and visiting higi’s self-screening stations are as follows:
- Check your blood pressure: According to the American Heart Association, the ideal blood pressure is below 120/80. If you have high blood pressure (140/90 or higher) you need to see a doctor before exercising. While 130/85 doesn’t constitute high blood pressure, that’s the point where it begins to cross over into prehypertension and you may want to see a doctor to monitor the rate and make sure it is not increasing before you begin exercising. You can also monitor your blood pressure as you complete higi fitness challenges and as you bring it into a healthier range.
- Hydrate: Studies have shown that most Americans are dehydrated and don’t even know it! The heat makes you sweat more than you normally would when exercising and therefore you must replenish all the lost fluids. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recently issued guidelines that women should consume about 2.7 liters of total water a day and men should drink about 3.71. Drinking enough water each day can help prevent illness and help maintain weight, but drinking alcohol and eating foods with high levels of sodium can offset that, as can living in elevated or extremely dry climates. Most higi stations are at retail locations where you can buy water and other hydration beverages, which is a great way to improve your hydration levels right away!
- Eat the right foods: Too much sodium and too little potassium are the problems with most American foods that lead to high blood pressure. Potassium-rich foods can lower your risk of high blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease. Eat a banana with breakfast before your morning bike ride or swap out a side dish for sweet potatoes – they’re number 1 on the list of foods high in potassium.
- If trying to lose weight, take it slow: If you’re looking to lose weight this summer, be sure not to go in too fast. As important as it is to maintain a healthy weight, it’s equally as important to go about it slowly and mindfully. In other words, don’t run a 5k if you haven’t been training for it for weeks. It’s important to know and understand your Body Composition which can reveal how much unhealthy fat you are carrying. If you are overweight, you may also have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, as well as other metabolic diseases such as hypertension, high cholesterol and heart disease. higi stations have a scale and will calculate your body composition, and if you create a free account, monitor your progress.
(1) http://www.nationalacademies.org/hmd/Reports/2004/Dietary-Reference-Intakes-Water-Potassium-Sodium-Chloride-and-Sulfate.aspx Also – “Total Water” refers to the estimation that about 20% of water is consumed in the food we eat and only 80% is consumed by drinking water and other liquids