Does more sweat mean a better workout?
The sweatiest workouts can feel like the hardest workouts. Surely walking out of a hot yoga class or a steamy Spin session completely drenched means you got a good workout, right? Well, not exactly. How much you sweat doesn’t necessarily correlate with how intense your workout is or how many calories you burn. Here’s the deal.
Why do we sweat?
When your body temperature rises, your eccrine glands secrete sweat, and the evaporation of moisture from your skin helps you cool down.
How much we sweat during exercise is due to a number of factors, including gender (men tend to sweat more than women) and age (younger people sweat more than older people), as well as genetics, temperature, and humidity. Weight plays a role as well: Larger people tend to sweat more because their bodies generate more heat.
Another contributor is fitness level. Surprisingly, fit people tend to sweat more than those who are less fit. Research suggests that as your fitness level improves, your body’s heat-regulating system kicks in sooner, cooling you down faster and allowing you to work harder, which translates to a lot more sweat.
And don’t be misled by the loss of a few pounds after a super sweaty workout. This is simply water weight you gain back when you rehydrate and doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve burned lots of calories.
On the flip side, don’t assume a low-sweat workout means you aren’t working hard enough or burning enough calories. It could be that your sweat is evaporating quickly, because you’re exercising in air-conditioning, for example. Or maybe you just don’t sweat much in general.
The Bottom Line
Unfortunately for hot yogis and tropical climate dwellers, sweat is not a sign of intensity. Perspiration rate is personal and highly affected by other factors such as fitness level, heat, humidity, weight, and even age and gender. No matter how much you sweat, be sure to drink enough water to replace what you lose.
For more information about this subject, you can watch the video bellow.