Exercising in summer: Expectation versus reality.

Thanks to our brand partner, Pantene

The struggle is real.

Exercising in summer really is the best. It’s energising, invigorating, and guaranteed to put you in a great mood.

That is, until you actually get around to doing it — because at that point, you remember that exercising in summer is actually the very worst, and that it comes with a whole range of complications that just don’t exist in the colder months.

Compared to winter, you are no longer your graceful, never-sweats-too-much, composed self. Your hair is no longer well-behaved and your breathing and heartbeat no longer seem to be under control.

And yet, the bright blue skies and beautiful weather continue to trick you into thinking it would be a great idea to get outside and go for a run.

“Come out and play,” say the blue skies. “We promise you’ll enjoy it.”

exercising in summer
“The bright blue skies and beautiful weather continue to trick you.” Image via iStock.

Do not be fooled by the beautiful blue skies. They are crafty and deceitful.

Of course I know that exercising all year round has its benefits. It helps keep you fit, helps with your mental health, reduces heart disease etc etc, we get it already.

And although we know it’s good for us, I also feel like there are certain things we can all relate to when braving the blistering Australian sun each summer.


Here are just a few of the expectations of exercising in summer, compared to the harsh, harsh realities of it.

EXPECTATION: there will only be a tiny amount of perspiration.

Reality: it will look as if you have dunked yourself in a refreshing bath of… sweat.

We’ve all been there. We see someone really fit-looking going for a run and decide that it might be a great idea for us, too.

As soon as you start though, you realise that you will not look like the svelte runner you had seen effortlessly running past.

Instead, you will look like you have gone fully clothed into the ocean on a whim.

EXPECTATION: your hair will be obedient and stay in its allocated hair-tie.

Reality: your hair will stick to your forehead, neck and scalp — all at once.

After about two minutes, this is you.

EXPECTATION: you will do laps in the ocean like the graceful sea-goddess you think you are.

Reality: you will leave the water after six strokes, panting, with a lot of seawater ingested and sand trapped in every crevice of your body.

PS: your hair won’t look beachy and wavy — it will look crusty and salty. It happens to the best of us. It’s OK.

EXPECTATION: you will do laps in the pool like the graceful pool-goddess you think you are.

Reality: the smell of chlorine will follow you for three days.

And if you are blonde – prepare for your hair to take on a delightful green tinge.

EXPECTATION: you will do one run and will immediately become a fitness powerhouse.

Reality: the run will do nothing. Nothing.

Apparently it takes a few weeks to get good at the whole ‘fitness’ thing.

Well, there you go.

EXPECTATION: you will be able to go from exercise to drinks with a quick shower to refresh yourself.

Reality: you need to stand under cold water for 30 minutes to reduce the redness that has taken over your body.

And that’s not all. You will forget that after every time you even think of exercising, your hair will need to be thoroughly washed to remove the remnants of your fitness regime.

EXPECTATION: a run in the warm sunshine will be SO refreshing.

Reality: heatstroke is imminent.

Exercising in the great outdoors in summer in Australia? Brace yourself…

Luckily, there are some definite upsides of exercising in summer, most of which include unlimited bragging rights to friends and the rewarding/refreshing taste of watermelon after a run.

And if that doesn’t work for you, you can always go for that swim fully clothed and trick everyone into thinking you exercised.


How do you manage exercising in summer?

If you do make it to the gym/outside, here are some killer tunes to make it worth your while:

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6 reasons to exercise that have nothing to do with ‘dropping a dress size’.