‘Here in the UK, we’re experiencing temperatures that are pretty much off the charts at the moment, so it’s essential that we take care of ourselves. These are 7 tips on how to survive the heat wave…’
I have to say this is NOT a topic I ever really imagined myself having to write. I mean, I’m from Scotland, for God sake. For a large portion of my life, I didn’t even know what the big ball in the sky actually was.
Since moving to Wales, however, I have been exposed to the sun rather more than I did back up North. This has prepared me slightly for the current weather, but even 3 years of prep can’t fully acclimatise a Scot for more than 2 days of constant sun…
This sounds really basic and it is. However, because we’re not used to such a prolonged period of intense heat, we don’t always think about taking water or drinks outside with us.
I never take water when I go out running in my hometown because I do a 4-mile loop and don’t need it. Last night, I realised just how bad an idea that was when I was jogging in 23-degree heat.
Whether you’re exercising or just out and about for any length of time – take water or juice with you. You never know when you’ll need it and, if you don’t use it, there’s no harm in being prepared.
There’s always a balance between going out in your jumper and coat on a summer’s day and doing out in your swimsuit. If appropriate, by all means, were the costume. If you’re going to work; probably don’t do that.
Seriously, though, wearing loose-fitting clothes will serve you far better in the heat than your sweater will. Wearing a couple of layers will also mean that you can remove a shirt or cardigan, for example, if you feel the need.
Wearing something loose with long sleeves can also help you avoid unwanted sunburn, which is always recommended.
Stay Out Of The Sun Between 12-3pm
The sun is generally strongest between 12pm-3pm so, if possible, stay inside. If you work outside then, obviously, this strategy might get you sacked. For us office workers, this is rarely an issue.
If you have to venture out, be prepared.
If you have air-con at home, then you’re already on to a winner. If you live in the UK, however, this isn’t really something we have much need for, so we tend to open our windows when it gets too hot.
Opening your windows isn’t always the best idea in order to cool down. Often, the only result of opening your windows will be that you heat up your home.
As well as keeping your windows shut, close your curtains to stop the sun beating through. This can help to keep the house cool and the temperature bearable.
Park in the Shade
My car is parked in the middle of my driveway and this week the interior has been hotter than the surface of the sun.
If you can, park under some shade so that you don’t actually melt when you attempt to get into your car after a day at work.
Also – never leave anyone in your car while you pop to run errands or to the store. This includes humans and, more importantly, dogs.
Just as a quick point: also never leave bars of chocolate in grocery bags in your car on a hot day. The looks your nephews will give you when you realise the chocolate is now in liquid form will make you feel like a Very Bad Aunt.
Reusable Ice Cubes
I can’t tell you how much I love these things. I use them for everything and it’s great to be able to open the freezer and always have a supply.
I’m not organised enough to make the normal ones, so I have to buy reusable ones. Plus – far less plastic is wasted if you’re not constantly going through boxes of ice cube bags.
Top Tip – these are also AMAZING for cooling down white wine. You know, if you’re too lazy to wait for it to chill in the fridge like a normal person…
Make a Batch of Iced Tea or Coffee
Us Brits are partial to a cuppa. While I like tea, I’m obsessed with coffee and drink numerous cups any given day.
Hot drinks aren’t really recommended in the current heat. That doesn’t mean you have to ditch your favourites, though. Simply fill your thermos or travel mug with an iced version to keep you cool on your morning commute.
I’m a firm believer that the sun should NOT interfere with my coffee consumption. I drink coffee to keep me sane and it’s best for everyone if I don’t have to endure the heat as well as skip on my favourite drink.
How do you plan on surviving the heat wave?