Summer is here and the mercury is rising everywhere. As we get older, we need to be aware that our body can lose much of the ability to cope with hot weather. Many pre-existing ailments such as diabetes and heart conditions can be aggravated by the temperature as well.
There are a few things that we all should do to prevent our body from overheating. Drinking plenty of water will keep us hydrated. Be aware that alcoholic and caffeinated beverages can encourage dehydration and should be avoided. It's also important to avoid direct sun and other places with high temperatures. Strenuous activities and exercises are good for us in the long run, but should be avoided when it's very hot outside.
These are a just a few basic things we can do, but it doesn't mean we have to be cooped up at home the whole summer. Some of us don't have air conditioning, so it's not a good idea for us to hang out at home during the hottest time of the day. Here are some fun summer activities that aren't too expensive and should help you cool down:
Hit the pool. There is nothing as refreshing as a dip in the pool when the temperature hits triple digits. Sure, not everyone has a pool in their backyard, but many of us have access to a community pool. Another added benefit is the many classes the community pool usually offers. As mentioned above, it's best to avoid exercise when it's hot, but we can keep our temperature regulated during aqua aerobics.
Take the kids to splash fountains. Most kids are out of school for summer break now and are looking for something to do. Taking the kids to splash fountains will give you an excuse to get a little wet too. It's important to find a shady spot to take breaks, though, if it's really hot outside. If there aren't any splash fountains nearby, you can always set up your own slip and slide or a splash sprinkler in the backyard.
Find free AC. If you don't have air conditioning at home, it's probably wise to make a list of places where you can go to cool down for a few hours in the afternoon. I'm actually at the library right now enjoying their AC while I'm working on this article. Other good options are theaters, malls, a friend's home with AC or senior centers. Many communities also have cooling centers where seniors can hide out during a heat wave. Your local news should broadcast their location whenever a heat wave becomes a headline.
Go camping at the beach. I guess this really depends on your location. Here in the Pacific Northwest, everyone heads to the beach when it gets really hot. The beaches here are usually much cooler than inland, and camping there is a great way to escape the heat for a few days.
Frozen treats. Going out for ice cream, smoothies and frozen yogurt is another great way to cool down. These cool treats will refresh you and help cool down your body temperature. A smoothie is a great way to get a few servings of fruits into your system as well. You can even make your own at home if you want to spend even less.
Remember to drink plenty of water and stay cool. If you have older friends, then it's a good idea to check up on them as well. These heat waves are really hard on seniors, and we should all watch out for each other.
Enjoy the summer while it lasts. It's going to cool down soon enough.
Joe Udo blogs at Retire By 40 where he writes about passive income, frugal living, retirement investing and the challenges of early retirement. He recently left his corporate job to be a stay at home dad and blogger and is having the time of his life.
More From US News & World Report