Glance around any gym, and you'll see all kinds of perspiration. Some exercisers will be drenched from head to toe, while others look fresh. If you've ever finished a workout and get disappointed not to be drenched in sweat, you're not alone. The more effort you exert, the more heat your body generates, which in turn triggers the body to produce more sweat. Let's explore some of the lesser-known facts about sweating.
Myth or Fact? The fitter you are, the more you sweat.
It's a fact! Fit people tend to sweat more than people who don't work out regularly. It's all about how much heat they generate.
How much sweat is normal?
Humans have an average of three million sweat glands — eccrine and apocrine sweat glands. Eccrine sweat glands excrete an odorless sweat. Apocrine sweat glands are found in the scalp, armpits, and groin. When it breaks down and reacts with the bacteria on the skin, producing a distinct odor. Some people sweat more than others, so it might have nothing to do with the level of workout you are at. People who carry around extra weight most likely sweat more than others. They have to work harder to complete a task, causing their body temperature to rise more. There is also the genetic factor - some people are simply heavier sweaters than others. The fitter you are, the higher your workload – and the higher your workload, the more heat you generate!
That's what leads to the extra sweat.
Also men tend to sweat more than women because they are bigger and generate more heat.
Is the sweat patch on the T-shirt a badge of pride?
Everyone is different. Some people can work out for an hour and leave the gym looking as if they just walked out of their house, while others leave the gym sweating profusely. But should you worry about not producing enough sweat while exercising? Absolutely not. The amount of sweat you produce during a workout doesn't really matter, because it doesn't affect the number of calories you burn. Many of us make a great effort to conceal sweat. Yet sweating is vital to our health. Sweating is often underappreciated. Sweat glands help our skin filter toxins out of the body, boosting our immune system. It also cools our body and maintains proper body temperature. The best way to increase sweat is to exercise.
When we sweat due to intense exercise, good things happen to our body:
- Circulation increases throughout the body
- Skin releases toxins such as alcohol and waste products, helping the body to detoxify
- The elimination of salt from the body can help prevent kidney stones
- Increased thirst and the need to drink more water which helps in lowering the risk of kidney stones
- It releases endorphins which are hormones that trigger positive feelings in the body
- The pores on the skin open up and allow for a protective barrier to form against pathogens that reduce bacteria on the skin
Go ahead… break a sweat!
When it comes to workouts, you need an appropriate balance of training and rest in order to perform optimally. Plenty of elite athletes are heavy sweaters. When you consistently train and keep fit, you might notice that you begin sweating more quickly and intensely. This is because your body has become more efficient at cooling itself down.
Regardless of how much you sweat, remember to stay hydrated!
Be sure to recover from any cardio workout or sweat session with plenty of water to keep your body hydrated. To avoid dehydration during a fitness session, drink at least 8 oz. of water 20 to 30 minutes before and after exercise. During your exercise session, sip 8 to 10 oz. every 15 - 20 minutes.
All sweat isn't the same!
If you're out of shape, heavy sweating confirms the fact. But if you're in shape and yet your t-shirts are drenched after a workout, don't worry. Your body is doing a great job of cooling itself down. Just standing in a hot room could make you sweat. Don't confuse that with an activity that will be good for you to lose weight. Dropping water weight by putting yourself into excessive heat will only give short-term weight loss but it is dangerous. It is only the physical effort that causes changes in the body. If the answer to weight loss and fitness gains were as simple as sitting in a hot room, then everyone would sit in a sauna at home and become thin.
Want to get a better workout?
Don't believe in the myth that sweating is a sign of a good workout. Instead, focus on better indicators of a good workout like how you can do more than what you were previously able to do. Whether you are just starting your fitness journey or a seasoned pro looking for something new, Stronglife based out of Point cook provides both personal training sessions at Goodlife gym, online personal training and weight loss programs as well. We have the best online fitness trainers in Australia who would love to help you out! Our online personal training program is a boon during this pandemic. Reach out today!