Thursday, January 21, 2010

let's get physical which equals sweaty

since sunday, i have sweat more than i have since i was on Georgetown's crew team freshman year (early mornings doing workouts on the erg, see below, in 30 degree weather and an old boathouse = sweat dripping from your face and your body steaming when you take a break)

anyway- i have been to three spin classes since sunday. the first was a two hour one on sunday, during which we watched "Behind Enemy Lines." The second was Tuesday, with a substitute instructor named Erica. Erica gets very excited about spin class, and you spend lots of time sprinting up hills. Thursday, Laurie was back (YAY) and we had a killer workout.

During all of these, sweat was just dripping from my face and my body. everywhere. it was so gross. now, i used to really truly hate sweat. when i was about 12, i entered my first tennis tournament. i won my first match and lost my next two. then i told my parents i didn't want to play tennis anymore because i didn't like a sport where i had to sweat.

well, now i get to sweat alot. and while i appreciate it more (you know, the more you sweat, the healthier you are), i still don't think i like it. sweat is moist. and it drips. and it smells like body and salt. sometimes, it is nice to know you are working hard. however, it is not nice to be in a small room at 75 degrees with 15 other human beings who are sweating like crazy and you just know their sweat is evaporating into the air and settling on your skin. and the walls. and the windows. ew.

now let me leave you with some facts about sweat:

It's cool to sweat -- literally. Sweating is your body's most effective way of cooling itself because when sweat evaporates from your skin, body heat is reduced.

While sweating is important, if you don't replace the fluids you lose through sweat, it can lead to dehydration and heat illness. That's why fluid replacement before, during and after exercise and activity is so crucial.

What Happens When We Sweat

During exercise, the heat produced by working muscles exceeds the heat released by the body, and body temperature rises. The rise in body temperature causes an increase in sweating and blood flow to the skin. As a result heat is removed by the evaporation of sweat from the skin, radiated from the body to the cooler surroundings, and is lost by convection to moving air.

Our bodies are approximately 55-65% fluid. When some of that fluid is lost through sweat, it affects our cardiovascular system and our ability to control temperature.

Factors that Influence Sweat Rates

Environment - High temperatures cause you to sweat more quickly and to lose more fluids through sweat. Humidity also affects your ability to cool off. It's harder for sweat to evaporate in hot, humid weather than in hot, dry weather heat index chart.
Exercise intensity - As your body works harder, body temperature increases, which leads to greater sweat loss.
Clothing and equipment - Minimal, loose-fitting clothing helps promote heat loss. Heavy clothing and equipment (e.g., football uniform and helmet) doesn't allow heat to be released as easily and increases sweating.
Genetics - Heredity has some effect on your ability to sweat, but being in good physical condition is usually a more important factor.
Fitness and acclimatization - As you increase your fitness, you become a better "sweater." You sweat sooner and you sweat more. The body adapts to exercise in warmer temperatures by sweating more.
Sweat Glands

The body has approximately 2 - 4 million sweat glands weighing a total of approximately 100 grams (about 3 ounces).
The most concentrated area of sweat glands is on the bottom of our feet while the least concentrated area of sweat glands is on our back.
Women have more sweat glands than men, but men's are more active.

(facts courtesy of this website)

yummmmmmmmmmm. ultra love.

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