Our friends at 99 Walks know that walking is a fantastic way to soak up the sunshine, and not just because the warmth feels good on your skin. Every month, hundreds of women realize the mental and physical benefits of moving their bodies in nature by participating in a walking challenge. Not only do they see the benefits that consistent walking can bring, but they end up falling in love with the supportive community, daily inspiration, and gorgeous, wearable inspiration they receive after crushing their goal.
Sunshine has plenty of health benefits, and with the proper safe sun protection, walking is a great way to savor the sun. But it's also important to stay safe. Here are 9 things to keep in mind when soaking up the summer (or any season for that matter!) sun.
1. Get up and go, or wait until later
If you’re heading outside, the best time to go is before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m. Not only are the temperatures going to be more favorable, but the sun’s rays will be less harsh and damaging to your skin.
2. Slather on the sunscreen
Sure, we all want that summer glow, but wearing sunscreen is a key way to prevent skin cancer. Aim for an SPF of 30 and reapply often, even on those cloudy and cooler days. Though the clouds do block some sun, harmful rays can still break through, leaving lasting damage.
3. Cover your eyes
Yep, protecting your eyes is super important to reduce the risk of cataracts, as well as damage to the sensitive skin around your eyes. And, let’s be honest, squinting doesn’t do us any good either! So grab your sunglasses before heading out the door.
4. Have a hat? Wear it.
A wide brim that covers not only your face, but also the back of your neck and ears is best, but a baseball cap can help keep sun off your face, too. Just don’t forget to apply sunscreen to your ears and neck if you reach for a ball cap.
5. Hydrate. Hydrate. Hydrate.
As the temperatures climb and we become more active, the amount of water our body needs also increases. Make sure you hydrate well before and after any outdoor activity. A dehydrated body can result in irritability, headache, dizziness, fainting, low blood pressure, and an increase in heart rate.
6. Be aware of reflective surfaces
Water, sand and snow reflect the sun’s rays, so make sure you’re using sun protection when you’re around these areas, as sun exposure is more intense.
7. Don’t forget your feet
Many of us love to don a pair of cute sandals, flip flops, or even strappy, adventure-ready footwear, but that leaves the tops of our feet exposed to the sun. So take note if you’re airing out your toes and spread on some sunscreen.
8. Take a break in the shade
A beach umbrella, tailgating tent, or even a leafed-out tree can help provide protection from the heat of the day and the sun’s harmful rays. If you plan to be out for a while, make sure you have some cover to duck under to give you a place to reapply sunscreen and rehydrate your body.
9. The right clothing makes a difference
Last, but certainly not least, know that the right clothing makes a difference. Coolibar offers sun protective apparel and accessories for what they like to call “Effortless Sunscreen” with innovative UPF 50+ fabrics and UPF clothing designed to block 98 percent of UV rays. Though sunscreen on exposed skin is essential, the benefits of ultraviolet-protective clothing (UPF) is that the clothing doesn’t rinse off, isn’t applied too thinly or incorrectly, and doesn’t need to be reapplied. And no, your typical cotton t-shirt isn’t enough, especially when it gets wet. As a result, Coolibar was the first clothing company to receive the Skin Cancer Foundation's Seal of Recommendation.
Ready for the best part? We're giving away a $250 Coolibar Care Package so you can safely soak up the sunshine!
No purchase necessary to enter or win. You must be 18 years or older and a US resident. Entries accepted until Monday, August 10, at 11:59pm EST. Click here to see complete rules.
Join the 99 Walks monthly walking challenge and earn an inspirational bracelet when you reach your monthly goal. Head to www.99walks.fit to learn more.