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Let me go wild, like a blister in the sun…

By Angela Unsworth

Recently, I spent some time at Lake Louise for a writer’s retreat and was fortunate to have amazing weather for the duration of my time out there. I spent many hours lounging on a rocky island in the middle of a creek, laptop open and hands furiously typing away…and with the hot sun beating down on me.

Of course I got the craziest sunburn and now have a permanent tank top imprint on my shoulders. I wore sunscreen but as we all know, it does need to be reapplied. After a few hours of being out in the sun, I realized that maybe I should have brought the sunscreen out with me. But alas, that was not what I had done and although I didn’t go wild and blister, boy was my face red!

After this mistake, I continued to spend the rest of the weekend outdoors with my sunscreen constantly by my side. It was my new best friend.

Working outdoors can be an amazing opportunity; you get the chance to enjoy the warmer weather and work on your tan, all while earning some dollars. It can also be dangerous. With the temperatures as hot as they have been I wanted to share some tips for surviving the heat.

Some of these tips might seem like common sense, but if you only work outdoors for a few months out of the year, this may not be routine safety for you.

Just add water.

Drink lots of water – try to avoid any coffee as caffeine can dehydrate you, or if you need your coffee fix, pair it with a glass of water. I always carry my water bottle with me and have a goal to drink two bottles by lunch time. If you set goals like this for yourself, you’ll remain aware of how much water you need to drink to stay hydrated in the great outdoors.

Play hide and seek with the sun.

Try to find some shade if you can. Whether that means working under a tree or moving with the shadow of nearby buildings, you can avoid the worst of the heat by finding nature’s cooler places to perform your job.

Protection: coming to a sunscreen near you.

Wear the sunscreen and make sure to reapply it every couple of hours. Don’t be like me, some red-faced skin peeler! Learn from my mistakes and wear a good sun protection factor (spf) lotion.

It’s not always easy to avoid the sun when you work outside, but if you can manage to do it, I would highly recommend it. You can still enjoy the summer in the shade. I’d have to say you could probably enjoy it more than I did once I got that sunburn.

Do you have a story about your experience in the great outdoors? Comment here or send us a tweet @HeadsUpAB.

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