Sweating more does not necessarily mean that you are getting a better workout. How much you sweat depends on factors such as your weight, gender, and genetic makeup
Sweating more does not necessarily mean that you are getting a better workout.
In general, sweating means your basal metabolic rate is higher, and you are exerting enough energy to make your muscles work harder. This causes your body to produce more sweat in order to cool down its internal temperature as it evaporates from your skin.
However, how much you sweat depends on factors such as your weight, gender, and genetic makeup. Moreover, fit people tend to sweat more because their bodies have gotten better at regulating their temperature.
Why do fit people sweat more?
As you get fitter and are able to exercise for longer periods of time, your body is able to generate heat for longer. To keep your core temperature steady, your body adapts to these changes and the following occurs:
- You start sweating sooner: Your sweat reaction becomes more intense and you will start to sweat sooner. When you exercise regularly, your body anticipates what is coming and accelerates the cooling process to keep up with the rise in core temperature.
- You sweat more: Sweat is your body’s natural cooling system. As you exercise more and your body produces more heat, your body becomes more adept at producing sweat in order to keep your core temperature under control.
- Electrolytes are lost at a lower rate per unit volume: As your body adjusts to sweating more frequently than before, the makeup of your sweat changes, allowing you to retain more electrolytes.
Remember to hydrate the more you sweat
The more you drink, both during activity and throughout the day, the more efficient your body will be at sweat production. Remember that when there is not enough fluid to go around, your body engages in an internal competition for resources, resulting in overall decreased performance. You do not absorb and digest food as effectively, your muscles do not work as well, and your core temperature is not controlled.
Even if you are properly hydrated, dumping water over your head and body during intense training sessions is a good way to cool down your body as well. Ice socks function in the same way: the ice absorbs heat from your body and melts, and then, the water carries away further heat as it evaporates from your clothing or the skin.
When your exercises are longer than an hour, electrolytes should be a part of your post-workout nutrition regimen. Sources of good hydration and electrolytes include:
- Oral rehydration solutions or water infused with electrolytes
- Gatorade or Pedialyte
- Lemon water with agave, sea salt, and lemon zest
- Coconut water rich in potassium
- Fruit juices containing banana, grapes, and papaya
- Smoothies with greens
Medically Reviewed on 3/16/2022
Baker LB. Sweating Rate and Sweat Sodium Concentration in Athletes: A Review of Methodology and Intra/Interindividual Variability. Sports Med. 2017;47(Suppl 1):111-128. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5371639/
Yamazaki F, Sone R, Fujii N, Ikegami H. A comparison of sweating responses during exercise and recovery in terms of sweating rate and body temperature. Int J Biometeorol. 1993 Dec;37(4):212-7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8112879/