Santa Clara in July certainly is nothing like the suffocating humidity of the deep South, but the lessons he learned early will still apply this summer for 49ers safety Eric Reid.
Reid signed on to take part in Gatorade’s Beat the Heat campaign to educate young athletes about the importance of hydration and taking measures to combat the inherent dangers of training camp.
Reid said he learned his lesson at an early age.
“I was at my grandmother’s house and I drank a ton of carbonated drinks and went out to football practice the next day and had heat exhaustion and had to stop practicing,” Reid said. “I was a little scared, but it helped in the long run. I haven’t had carbonated drinks since I was in eighth grade. So any thing I can do to help young athletes is a great match for me.”
He added, “What I’ve learned through my years of playing sports is if you feel thirsty, it’s probably already too late. Your body is telling you to drink water and drink Gatorade. You have to be proactive because if you lose your focus on your body, you’ll be in trouble.”
Reid, who remained in Louisiana to play collegiately at LSU, had a challenging transition to the NFL last summer. But he was able to concentrate on his playbook. The temperate weather in the Bay Area was something he did not have to worry about.
”As far as the heat is concerned it was probably the easiest training camp I’ve experienced in my life,” Reid said. “I love it here.”