Working out is a great way to start the day feeling accomplished, relaxed and energized. But if you struggle to cool down after working up a sweat in the morning, your morning shower might actually be the gateway to a sweatier, more stressful day.
No one likes to begin the day off feeling hot and stressed, but that’s often what a post-workout shower can do — especially when you’re crunched for time.
So why do we keep sweating after workouts? What’s the solution?
The Cause of Post Workout Sweats
There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to sweating during and after your workout. Many see sweating during workouts as a sign of how many calories they’re burning or as the hallmark of a good workout. But how much we sweat during a workout is influenced by several factors including gender, weight, genetics, age and general fitness levels, not caloric burn or how effective a workout is.
We sweat to regulate our body temperature — especially during a workout, sweat is designed to cool our bodies down. After you finish exercising, your heart slows down, pumping less blood to your skin. However, it takes a few minutes for your body temperature to cool down after a workout. If you’re rushing in the morning and jump directly into a hot shower before you have time to cool down, it exacerbates the problem, keeping your body temperature high and making you feel like you’re sweating longer. Add in the stress of rushing to work and it’s a recipe for disaster. Here’s our best tips on how to sweat less after workouts.
How to Sweat Less After Your Workout
Sweating is expected when exercising. It keeps you cool during exercise so you can keep working harder and your body doesn’t overheat. Generally speaking, your body temperature rises when you're active, so as your workout intensity increases, your body produces more sweat to compensate for the rise in temperature and loss of fluid.
But still, every exerciser sweats differently — regardless of a person’s physical condition. Here are a few tips to sweat less after your workout, feel cooler (faster) and avoid the dreaded post workout sweats
1. Keep Hydrated During Your Workout
Water intake affects how much you sweat; more water equals more sweat. Although this advice might sound counterintuitive when trying to sweat less, drinking water (and sweating) during your workout will help you better control body temperature and cool down faster post-workout.
Drink around 5-10 ounces of water every 15 minutes or so of your workout, and down another glass afterward to help regulate your body temperature before showering. It’s also important to note that if you suffer from hyperhidrosis, water intake won’t affect how much you sweat.
2. Consider the Temperature of Your Drinking Water
Guzzling a glass of warm water after a brutal workout might not seem like an effective or desirable cool-down method. But for some, it actually does the trick.
Your mouth is filled with TRPV1 receptors that respond to heat, making you feel warm when drinking warm water and vice versa. But there's another competing factor at play. When you eat or drink something hot, these heat receptors tell the brain you're hot, which triggers sweating and helps you cool down faster.
The right drinking water temperature ultimately boils down to the individual. If drinking cold water isn’t working for you, try drinking lukewarm water before, during and after your workout.
3. Wait Longer Before Showering
If you go for an intense run, your body needs time to cool down before immersing your sweaty self in a hot shower — and generally more than a few minutes. While everyone is different, start by waiting 30 minutes post-workout before showering or until your skin completely dries.
If you still can't cool down, try waiting gradually longer before showering until you find the right balance. To make this schedule work, you may need to adjust your morning routine and use this lag time to do other necessary tasks to prepare for the day.
4. Dial to the Right Shower Temperature
In theory, a cold shower should help your body cool off faster. But if you’ve sat in freezing water after an intense workout, you know it doesn’t always subdue the sweating aftereffects.
Extreme hot and cold temperatures could mess with your body’s heat signals. Showering in very hot water makes your body even hotter. But standing in a cold water makes your body think it’s cold and doesn’t need to activate its cooling mechanism — sweat. When you enter back into a warm room, your body wants to cool down to compensate for the extreme temperature change, and the sweating begins.
If both warm and cold water make you sweat after showering, try a lukewarm or room temperature shower.
5. Wake Up Earlier
If you’re not a morning person, this may be a tough pill to swallow. But if you want to avoid the rushed, sweaty feeling after your relaxing morning workout & shower, you need to allow plenty of time to cool down. Having more time to prepare for the day will also reduce your stress and the inevitable stress sweat that follows.
6. Wear the Right Workout Materials
Synthetic fabrics such as moisture-wicking shirts can help wick away sweat from your body and keep you feeling cool while exercising. But if you suffer from axillary hyperhidrosis or sweat heavily in your armpits, you need a shirt that can absorb and release your sweat so it doesn't weigh you down while working out.
Thompson Tee's sweat proof underarm barrier captures sweat and releases it as vapor to keep you feeling dry. Plus, the shirts also mask the smell of body odor that's unavoidable with moisture-wicking shirts, making them a great alternative to your workout gear. Watch as one power lifting expert puts a Thompson Tee to the test in the gym, and see how it works firsthand.
Finding the right cooling method for your body will take some trial and error, but there are steps you can take to start the day off feeling dry and confident.
What other tips do you have to sweat less after your morning workout & shower?