Pack appropriately. Bring water, food, a cellphone, a map or a compass, a whistle, a headlamp, and a flashlight.
Stay hydrated. When you hike or do any kind of exercise in hot weather, you cool off by sweating, which causes you to lose body fluids. If you do not replace these fluids, you can become dehydrated. "Your body may then have difficulty sweating and cooling down," explains Dr. Pook. "This can lead to heat injury ranging from moderate problems, like heat cramps and heat exhaustion, to medical emergencies, like heat stroke."
Choose wisely. Hike on an established trail, and stay out of areas declared off limits to hikers.
Watch where you are walking. "That is a modern-day warning more of us need to heed," Dr. Pook says. Whether we are lost in the music coming through our earbuds, talking on our phone or sending some texts, many of us are not focused on what is in front of us as we hike. Keep your focus on the people and potential obstacles in front of and around you.
Take it easy in the beginning. If you just started hiking or if you have not exercised recently, forget speed and walk at a comfortable pace. Then gradually work up to 100 steps a minute.
Kettering Health Network is a faith-based, not-for-profit healthcare system. The network has eight hospitals: Grandview, Kettering, Sycamore, Southview, Greene Memorial, Fort Hamilton, Kettering Behavioral Health and Soin.