Running in public can be intimidating! Especially if you are concerned with how much you sweat. Fear not! You shouldn't be ashamed! If anything, you should celebrate it! Sweating during physical activity is normal and all it means is that your body is efficient at cooling itself. You should embrace this beautiful hot mess, and know that your body is thanking you in its own unique way. Here are 5 other myths about sweat, debunked, from our friends over at My Fitness Pal. #1. Sweat is fat crying Although sweating through your workout can be a sign you are working hard and burning calories (including calories from fat), it does not mean that sweating and fat are related. Sweat is made up of water, so when you are sweating hard, you are simply losing water. Those pounds that you loose directly after a hot yoga class or a long summer run? They will come back once you re-hydrate. Which you should most definitely, not avoid. #2. Fit people don't sweat as much. There are several factors that need to be considered when looking at ones sweat loss. Fit people typically sweat more because their body is efficient at cooling. The harder you train, the more your body knows what it needs to do. Gender and genetics also play a role in sweat loss - some people are simply born with more sweat glands than others! #3. Sweat is stanky! It's not the sweat that stinks! Again, sweat is just water! "Sweat is odorless until it mixes with the bacteria and fungi on your skin. Once the two combine, the bacteria and fungi begin to metabolize, or break down the sweat on your skin, leading to the characteristic of funky odor associated with sweat." (Hardy, 2021) #4. Sweat gets rid of toxins The main purpose of sweat is to keep our bodies cool to prevent overheating. Although there are minerals found in sweat such as potassium, magnesium and urea, the amounts are so minuscule that it will not make a difference when it comes to your body detoxing itself. One might ask "So how does my body detox then?" Easy! Through our liver and kidneys! It's important to refrain from smoking and to keep alcohol consumption to a minimum to help keep these organs healthy. Healthy organs allow our bodies to do all the hard work for us, without breaking a sweat! #5. If you didn't sweat during your workout, it wasn't good enough. Again, everybody is different. Some people sweat a lot, some people don't. By now we know that sweat is water, which means that the amount you produce not only changes based on genetics and hydration, but on other things such as a hot, humid day. The best way to track a good workout is to gauge how you feel before, during, and after the activity. A good workout should leave you feeling refreshed and energized!
So the next time someone decides to point out the obvious and make a comment on just how sweaty you are, keep your head high, run along (or share a fact from this article), and remind yourself of how good YOU will feel after YOUR workout. Perhaps you could even invite them along! Our running groups start on June 2nd. Come join us for some very hot and surely sweaty, non judgemental group workouts! www.soulrunners.ca/fitness-programs