The Colorado Springs Gazette

Dear Amy:

AMY DICKINSON Send questions to askamy@ or to Ask Amy, P.O. Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068.

My husband and I have been talking about spending more time outside, whether it be working, camping or just sitting outside.

I LOVE working outside and I LOVE working with my husband. We work so well together that when we get on the same page, we can get a lot accomplished.

My problem is that I’ve been so busy raising the kids (I’m a SAHM) that my work ethic isn’t there and I can’t work outside for more than five minutes without sweating my head off!

I feel like I’ve been so spoiled by turning the air conditioner on as much as I have been, but when there’s no breeze and it’s 80°F, I have to turn it on, otherwise it gets so hot in our kids’ room that they struggle to sleep.

I do open windows and we leave ceiling fans on all the time (hot or cold).

Is there anything else I can do to keep it comfortable without turning on the air? I feel so lazy (or too spoiled) because I can’t stand working outside anymore.

Do I just need to push through until I get acclimated to the heat again?

Growing up we had a window unit that my dad would only put in in late July/early August — if he’d put it in at all.

We currently have central air, so it’s really easy to just turn it on or off for a couple of days. This is why I think I’m just spoiled. — Spoiled By AC

Dear Spoiled:

You may think you’re spoiled by air conditioning, but I urge you to be checked out by a doctor. “Pushing through” when you feel this way after five minutes of heavy sweating is not wise.

For some people, heat tolerance probably changes as they age, but your example seems extreme.

If you don’t have an underlying health issue, you should be able to acclimate somewhat to working outdoors if you do so gradually, increasing your exposure over time. And yes, you should be able to acclimate to a warmer temperature inside your house by a couple of degrees if you change the setting on your AC, but you should not make any changes until you receive a clean bill of health.





The Gazette, Colorado Springs