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How I handle hot weather

Hot weather can affect you if you’re living with a lung condition. Here’s how Ian manages to keep going in a heatwave. 

Ian Bond

Too hot for a walk today?  It's all too easy to find another excuse to not go out when the weather isn't 'just right'. When is it ever? 

I'm lucky to have a partner who knows how to goad me into action so that I don't fester at my computer desk. 

Between us we choose walks to suit conditions – that's my condition and the weather condition. And we kit up accordingly. 

Be prepared

In hotter weather I always carry water and a wet flannel in a coolpack with ice blocks. I cleaned out an old spray detergent bottle and I use it as a spritzer. The good thing is, it all gets lighter to carry as you use it up!

A cheapo travel fan and a spare battery come along too. 

We decide to go to places where there’s plenty of shade with somewhere to sit and rest. If I’m determined to get out and the sun is blazing, I'll carry a lightweight fold-up umbrella too. When I use it, I get double takes but you can see people working out I’m the sensible one. 

I double check emergency inhalers of course. And I always make sure a phone is charged just in case we have to call a family member to collect us. 

Keep cool

I’ve discovered it’s important for me not to over dress. Walking, even at a snail’s pace, warms me up. And in hot weather you don’t want to build up body heat – you want to lose it. I’ve found it’s always useful to have a backpack to carry that jumper I didn't need. 

If I need some cool air urgently, I find trees where the air will be at a lower temperature. If I’m in a built-up area, I find a supermarket, bank or big office block. 

Don't be embarrassed to go into these places if you need to. People are great. Just wheeze a bit louder and they’ll understand! 

If you’re living with a lung condition, you may find that high temperatures cause your symptoms to flare up. But there are things you can do to help keep yourself well.

Read our top tips on looking after yourself in hot weather.

Do you have a story to tell? It could be about your lung condition, a friend or relative you know who lives with one, or how caring for them impacts your life. We'd love to hear what you've got to say!

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Thanks for your suggestions, Ian. I was really struggling this morning. I felt very dizzy. Luckily it got better as the day went on. I'm definitely going to try the old spray bottle spritzer!
I recently returned from a wonderful holiday in Singapore where temperatures were around 30/32 degrees with little variation between day and night. I was very hot a lot of the time, but never distressingly so and I just walked at my own pace. Most buildings, restaurants, shopping malls, taxis, and accommodation seemed to be air conditioned. However, I did do more outside walking than I had expected to without experiencing any lung problems, apart from one drizzly day when I was a bit wheezy and felt extremely exhausted and tired. My son told me that humidity levels were almost 100%! In fact I felt so much better than usual, loved feeling warm all the time and felt more like exercising than usual, and I came home completely refreshed. I have decided to go back next year.

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22 June 2016