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I have two big problems blocking me from regular workouts. It's hard to make my self do the workout, and I hate sweating.

The only possible solution I have is to only workout before I am going to take a shower. Also I don't think you can sweat swimming, so that might also be an option.

Any other way to workout without sweating?

  • Wouldn't it be simple to just have shorter workouts and a shower afterwards? – clabacchio Dec 3 '14 at 8:17
  • Time you exercises so that you can shower afterwards (most do), and get over it. Seriously. – mart Dec 3 '14 at 8:45
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    I'm tempted to -1 for you don't sweat swimming. Of course you sweat when swimming, you just don't notice it. Sweat is a reaction by the body in an attempt to cool itself. Just because you are in a pool doesn't mean this doesn't still happen. – JohnP Dec 3 '14 at 16:56
  • @JohnP, you're assuming you still heat as much while swimming. Water absorbs heat faster than air, so it could be possible that heat is dissipated fast enough that you never reach a temperature at which you begin to sweat. I wouldn't know exactly how hot one gets while swimming as an exercise, but in theory, the above is possible. – Tyler Dec 5 '14 at 7:20
  • @Tyler - I swam competitively for 17 years in pools regularly in the 70-74 Fahrenheit range, and I can assure you that you sweat. While you don't sweat as much as land based athletics, your body heats up internally, and water can't absorb fast enough to completely obviate the need for sweating. There are a couple of studies that show sweat rates in both elite and untrained people while swimming, here is one sample: jsams.org/article/S1440-2440%2802%2980003-2/abstract?cc=y – JohnP Dec 5 '14 at 15:10
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During both exercise and inactivity the body generates heat. In order to maintain proper core temperature, this excess heat must be carried away from the body.

Ordinarily, during low activity periods, the convection of ambient air around non-sweating skin is sufficient to draw off the heat. However, during high activity periods, heat is generated more quickly than it can be carried away through the interaction of air and dry skin. At these times, the body's automatic temperature regulation system kicks in and causes sweat to accumulate on the skin surface. This increases the rate at which heat can be drawn away from the body via the air.

There is only two ways to prevent sweating:

  1. Slow down the rate at which heat is generated in the body.
  2. Increase the rate at which heat is convected away from the body.

Number (1) is achieved by decreasing the intensity of your activity. Number (2) is achieved by decreasing the temperature of the ambient surroundings in which you are exercising.

Here is some practical advice related to both of these options:

  • In the pursuit of fitness, CONSISTENCY is much more important than INTENSITY. Consequently, it is much better to do easy enjoyable workouts that one looks forward to completing than to do killer workouts that one dreads. This is because with the former, one will likely stick with it for a long time, with the later, one is likely to burn out and only do a few sessions. It sounds like you may have the "dread" problem because in your post you said that "It's hard to make my self do the work out".

  • I often workout in my basement on the cycling trainer. Prior to the workout, I put the AC on 65 degrees, turn the fan on, and put my bike right under the fan. This helps.

  • Depending on where you live, the temperature might be such that you can comfortably run outside without sweating. 35 - 45 degrees is just about right for not sweating if you are going on an easy jog. . . it will be cold for the first mile.

  • You should embrace the sweat. There are other beneficial side effects to sweating besides keeping the body cool. These include cleaning your skin pores, which promotes healthy skin, protecting the body from kidney problems (e.g. kidney stones) by purging excess salt, causing one to be thirsty and thereby drinking water (which is very healthy), and even protecting one from getting sick (human perspiration contains a naturally occurring antimicrobial, which fights tuberculosis germs and other dangerous pathogens).

  • You can actually sweat in a pool. You just don't notice because you're already wet.

-Good Luck.

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    You've mentioned ambient temperature at a few points, but it's probably worth mentioning that low humidity is similarly important. – doppelgreener Dec 3 '14 at 4:14
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    "embrace the sweat", I like that – Dakatine Dec 3 '14 at 10:16
  • "You can actually sweat in a pool." Isn't the heat absorption by pool water much greater then just air? then according to your post shouldn't you not sweat in the pool? – user2656801 Dec 4 '14 at 0:37
  • @user2656801: "Yes, absolutely!" - to the first question in your comment, but "no" to the second question. The capacity of water to remove heat from the body is much greater than that of air - by approximately 4x. That is why, for example, walking into a 70 degree room feels fine, but diving into a 70 degree pool feels extremely cold! Nevertheless, one can still sweat in a pool if exerting enough energy -- just like one can still sweat while running out doors in 40 degree weather. – klsoren Dec 4 '14 at 3:24
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Your body is always sweating, including when working out, but how drenched you get depends on the intensity of the exercise combined with the humidity level. I used to go running at an easy pace in California and barely got wet. In a place like Miami, one can sweat considerably even from just walking down the street.

I know of one workout which doesn't leave me sweaty, and this is lifting weights in an air-conditioned (and otherwise low-humidity) gym. I can usually get away with lifting weights without having to shower afterwards. You might try that and see how you fare.

By the way, you sweat a lot when you are swimming, but you don't notice it because it goes into the water. However, I wear a swim cap when I swim. When I finish my swim and invert the swim cap to clean it, the scent of sweat is very noticeable.

  • Lol, why would you swim in a cap? – user2656801 Dec 4 '14 at 0:39
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    Many public swimming facilities require you to wear a swim cap for hygiene reasons. Also, competitive swimmers wear caps because it can reduce the drag their bodies product in the water. – Tim Biegeleisen Dec 4 '14 at 4:42
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Perspiration is a natural response to exercise. It's a byproduct of duration and/or intensity as well as environmental conditions. So, if you don't want to sweat, try something that's low impact. But, if you do, you risk not getting a real benefit from your efforts. As for the motivation aspect of your question, try finding a partner that shares the same goals. Then, you can motivate each other on those days when you really don't want to exercise. Above all else, try to make sure you enjoy your exercise time.

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