Outdoor Sauna Use Tip #1
While your outdoor sauna session could be as simple as stepping inside a hot room, sweating and leaving, doing so would cause you to miss out on the very details that make a true sauna so invigorating! You owe it to yourself to indulge in the full sauna experience. Remember, “sauna” is an experience, not a location, and as with any experience there are ways to get the most out of it! Regardless of which Almost Heaven Sauna you purchase – the Barrel, Modern, or Canopy – you want to use it to its fullest potential for your greatest benefit!
Your pre-sauna routine should start with a clear schedule. Seriously! Leave yourself at least an hour, but better two hours to fully pamper YOU! Start with the attitude of self-indulgence and you’re off to a good start! Set the sauna at your ideal “start” temperature, and in my case that temperature is 165F. I like to work my way up to 190F+, but find that I can enjoy my sauna longer if I start at the lower temperature. Your ideal range will likely be different, but you'll discover what it is soon enough.
Leave the water out of the sauna for now, as this is your dry sauna session. Let your body acclimate to the heat and absence of humidity. Recline on the bench, stretch out and relax. I like to lean against the flat wall and stretch out, putting the backrest behind me for added comfort and the leg rest under the bend of my knees. Sometimes I’ll start my session by reading the newspaper, but more often I like to simply close my eyes and relax. After all, the point is to forget about the world for a short time! Besides, if you wear reading glasses like I do, they get hot quickly and make reading an unpleasant experience. No wristwatch or clock; just start the sand timer and soak in the heat for 20 minutes or so.
As I’m sitting there the temperature is increasing, and by the end of my dry sauna the temperature is at about 190F+. Keep a bottle of water nearby and stay hydrated! You need to replenish the fluids. Also, be sure the vent at the top of the sauna is open. The fresh air is important and will not noticeably affect the temperature, even in a cold northern winter! Bathing suit? Not when I’m alone… only a towel. After 20 minutes or so I am hot, heart racing, and ready for a break.
Remember what happens in the sauna. The heat causes your heart rate to accelerate, your breathing to increase, and your body to perspire. It's a lot like a workout but without the work component! Plus, in the high temperatures you are cleansed in a variety of ways. Your respiratory system, immune system and cardiovascular system, are all cleansed in the high temperatures. Your circulation improves, your muscles are soothed, and your mind relaxes; everything needed for self-indulgence! All of these health benefits are the result of HEAT, and only a true, authentic steam sauna heater can deliver these benefits. An infrared room is cheap, but it is also a CHEAP imitation. IR gets warm, but not hot, and therefore the promoted health benefits are watered down versions of the real thing! Yes, I am biased, and all true sauna lovers are!