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Tips for Cold Weather Exercise | Sharon Kulawiak
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Tips for Cold Weather Exercise

Posted by on Dec 15, 2013 in Fitness | 0 comments

Tips for Cold Weather Exercise

As the winter approaches, especially here on the East Coast, running and walking outside are great ways to stay active year-round. The snow and ice on the trees makes for a beautiful landscape and the air is crisp. However, it is important to be mindful of the of the new requirements outdoor exercise warrants during these cold months.

 

Here are some tips to help you maintain your fitness level and achieve maximum enjoyment of your winter workout.

  • Layer your clothing. Wear several light layers including a windbreaker.  Your outer layer should be made of a breathable, wind-repellent fabric, such as Gore-Tex to let the heat escape, but not let cold winter air enter. As your workout progresses, you can always take off some layers and tie around your waist. Your inner layer, closest to your body should be made of synthetic fabrics that wick away perspiration and let it evaporate. Choose garments that have closures over front zippers to keep air and cold rain from leaking through openings and zippers.
  • Always wear a hat and gloves. A great deal of vital body heat is lost through the top of your head and through your hands. At a minimum cotton gloves but ideally heavier gloves with a wind-proof shell are best.
  • Take time to stretch. Always warm up and begin your workout slowly before you begin your run or walk in the cold, and end your workout with a good stretch as well. This is more important in the cold than the heat, because hot weather helps you warm up naturally.
  • Beware of black ice. This is the most dangerous aspect of exercising outside in winter months. Black ice forms early in the morning and at dusk, and is almost impossible to see. When there is dangerous ice consider a treadmill, mall walking, or at-home fitness program.
  • Beware of the windchill. Start your workout into the wind and finish with it behind you. If you run into the wind when you are sweaty, you can get dangerously chilled and nasty wind burn.
  • Change out of damp clothes as soon as possible. Even if you can’t shower immediately, it is best to change out of any clothing that is wet
  • Protect your skin. Wold weather wreaks havoc on your skin and lips.  Apply moisturizer and lip balm before venturing outdoors, and for daytime routines, choose products with SPF. Once you are back home, wash your face with a gentle cleanser and apply moisturizer to offset winter’s chapping and the drying effects of indoor heating. Don’t forget your lotion after showering, and be generous.

“Warm” Regards,

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