Cold Weather Exercise Safety Tips
Stay safe in the cold winter temperatures by following these helpful tips.
Working out on a brisk, chilly morning can be invigorating, but it comes with its own special brand of obstacles. Exercising in the cold can lead to frostbite, shortness of breath, and a host of other ailments. But by taking a few simple precautions, you can maintain your quest for a bikini-ready body, no matter what harsh winter temperatures Mother Nature has in store.
Heat In, Heat Out
When exercising in the cold, it’s all about the amount of heat your body is losing compared to the amount that you’re producing. Shivering is your body’s way of telling you that your core temperature has dropped below a comfortable level. If this happens, kick up the intensity of your workout to create additional body heat.
Layers Upon Layers
In cold weather, the body diverts blood flow away from your extremities to your core, which can leave you prone to frostbite. Protect yourself by dressing in layers, but be sure to use fabrics that wick moisture away from the body and provide insulation (always avoid cotton, since it holds onto moisture). And don’t forget to wear a cap and gloves to keep in the heat.
Protect Your Lungs
Breathing in cold, dry air while exercising can result in airway constriction due to inflammation, or Exercise-Induced Bronchoconstriction. This can cause asthma-like symptoms like shortness of breath. Wrap a scarf around your nose and mouth to trap moisture and breathe in humidified air.
Look Before You Step
If you’re going for a run or a walk, it helps to look down from time to time. Scan the area for patches of ice that can lead to slips and sprains, as well as puddles of icy water. Waterlogged socks can be incredibly uncomfortable and weigh you down, and they can also be a contributing factor to frostbite.
What's your favorite winter workout tip?
Abigail Ortiz is a freelance writer.
Photo Credit: linkedin