Although many people switch from running outdoors to the treadmill at the gym, the reality is that continuing to train outdoors offers great advantages, even when it’s autumn or winter.
So if you’re a runner, here’s how to prepare for cold-weather training properly and protect your body both inside and out.
Just as training in the heat is exhausting, running outdoors in winter is also exhausting and can even be frustrating when you notice that you don’t perform as well as you would in warmer temperatures.
- 1 What Precautions Should You Take When Exercising in The Cold?
- 2 Exercise in Cold Weather – Is It Good For You?
- 3 What Is The Most Important Thing a Person Should Look For in Cold Weather Exercise Clothing?
- 4 Does Exercising in Cold Weather Dehydrate You?
- 5 Is Walking in Cold Weather Good For You?
What Precautions Should You Take When Exercising in The Cold?
However, we can always make the most of our activity and for that, we leave the following tips:
1- Clothing in cold weather
In order for our body to have the right temperature while training with very low external temperatures, it is always advisable to dress in layers, that is, with different garments one on top of the other on the torso that we can remove as the body heat increases but that will also protect us in the beginning.
Wearing clothes made of technical and breathable fabrics that do not allow sweat to remain next to the skin is the most advisable since a wet body will quickly become a body that cools down and therefore, its performance is reduced as well as the discomfort and the probability of getting sick increases.
If we run in the snow, it is advisable to use waterproof shoes and clothing, as well as running chains for the shoes to adhere well to the ground without slipping, being often enough with shoes with good traction that will also serve us to successfully face the rain and leaves that may accumulate on the road.
The accessories that cover important parts of the body or very exposed to cold as ears, neck, hands, and head are also very useful, being able to use hats, visors, sports gloves, and panties all recommended in the technical fabric so that they do not accumulate sweat and get wet easily cooling us.
2- Adapt your training to the cold
When we run in cold weather our body must make not only the effort to move but also an extra effort to reach the right body temperature in an adverse climate.
This is why we often get exhausted easily when training outdoors in winter or find it hard to breathe because our airways become congested and constrict in the cold, making it difficult for air to pass through.
To cope with this we just need our body to adapt to the activity in lower temperatures, which may require a reduction in the pace or intensity of effort.
It is also important to warm up more carefully and for a longer period of time, and it is also advisable to modify the time of training by trying to run during the hours of greatest sunlight so that we do not experience so much cold.
Performing series can be difficult on very cold days because in the breaks we will get cold easily, therefore, on these days the best thing to do is continuous running and hard roads or those that require a higher intensity activity that will help us to warm up in a short time.
If we see that our body resists and gets tired easily, it is advisable to reduce the time or intensity of running to advance gradually to our goal, because as with everything, the body requires adaptation to an external climate change.
3- Take care of your aesthetics in cold weather
We always think about our internal body but it is essential that we also consider that running in cold weather can affect our aesthetics as much or more than doing it in summer.
For this reason, we recommend protecting your eyes from the wind and the sun with glasses suitable for this purpose, as well as using sun protection if you run on snow or on trails where the sun’s radiation is direct because even if you do not believe it, you can suffer serious burns in the coldest months.
On the other hand, using breathable fabrics is ideal to avoid that once we get warm and sweat is present not only we do not get cold but also, moisture is not concentrated and can cause blisters, chafing or even fungus on the skin.
And one last tip is to use moisturizers after training to avoid the dryness that the skin may experience with the cold and wind of this season.
Remember also that a good diet with sufficient fluids is also essential in winter to protect the body when running in cold weather, both inside and out.
Exercise in Cold Weather – Is It Good For You?
Studies indicate that in colder temperatures, you expend less energy, sweat less and your heart doesn’t have to work as hard, which means your workouts will be more efficient, plus, according to studies, exercising in cold weather can transform white fat from the thighs and belly into calorie-burning brown fat.
What Is The Most Important Thing a Person Should Look For in Cold Weather Exercise Clothing?
In cold weather, the most important thing a person should look for is exercise clothing that protects the extremities from frostbite, hypothermia, and generalized vasoconstriction, which are dangerous to health.
Does Exercising in Cold Weather Dehydrate You?
We tend to fool ourselves into thinking that without sweat, we won’t lose fluids as quickly as during the hottest days of summer. The thing is that during winter days, sweat evaporates faster because of the cold, dry air, which can lead to dehydration.
Is Walking in Cold Weather Good For You?
Walking in the winter is particularly beneficial to your fitness. For starters, a study published in the American Journal of Human Biology discovered that hiking in cold weather burns 34% more calories than hiking in mild weather. Consider this: trudging through snow or stepping through the wind needs more resources.