Safety Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

205 views | 10:14am on Friday 19th February 2021

The benefits of exercising in winter are undeniable, but there is a good excuse for us to curl up with a blanket and refuse to head outsides - Cold weather.

Don’t let cold weather spell the end of your fitness routine by trying these safety tips for exercising in cold weather to stay fit and warm.

Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

Best tips for exercising in cold weather

Stay safe during cold-weather exercise

Exercise is safe for almost everyone in whatever weather. However, if you have certain conditions, such as asthma, heart problems, make sure to visit your doctor first to review any special precautions based on your medications.

The following tips can help you stay safe and warm while taking outside workouts.

Best Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

#1. Check weather conditions 

It’s important to check the weather online before going outside. Take a look at temperature, wind and moisture, and time that you'll be outside for a safe cold-weather workout.

It’s unsafe to exercise outdoors under the wind chill as the wind can penetrate your clothes and remove the insulating layer of warm air, causing exposed skin to get vulnerable to frostbite.

Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

Safety tips for exercising in cold weather

The wind chill falling means the risk of frostbite rises. Frostbite can occur in 30 minutes or less at the wind chill levels below minus 18 F (minus 28 C). 

If the temperature drop below zero F (minus 18 C) or the wind chill is extreme or it’s raining, you should put off your outdoor workout. Instead, choose an indoor exercise to keep you safe.

#2. Know warning signs of frostbite and hypothermia

Frostbite happens when exposed skin gets damaged as a result of extremely cold temperatures. Its early warning signs are numbness, loss of feeling. Regarding tips for exercising in cold weather, you need to get out of the cold and warm the affected area If frostbite is suspected. Avoid rubbing it to not damage your skin. 

Hypothermia is an abnormal condition when your body temperature suddenly gets lower than usual. That could be due to prolonged exposure to cold temperatures. Exercising in cold weather increases the risk of hypothermia, especially for old people and young children.

Below are some common Hypothermia signs and symptoms:

  • Intense shivering

  • Memory loss

  • Loss of coordination

  • Exhaust

#3. Cold weather outfits: Dress in layers

Exercising generates enough amount of heat to make you feel much warmer than it really is. However, sweat evaporation will pull heat from your body and you feel chilled. So, instead of dressing too warmly, you should dress in layers. This is one of the best tips for exercising in cold weather as it allows you to remove when you start to sweat and then dress back as needed. 

Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

Explore amazing tips for exercising in cold weather

The first layer should be thin with synthetic material to draw sweat away from your body. Never wear cotton as it keeps wet next to your skin.

Next, add a layer of fleece or wool for insulation. Finally, put on a waterproof, breathable layer for the outer layer.

Choose the right combination of clothing based on your exercise intensity. 

#4. Breathe Right

If your heart rate rises when the1084 temperatures start to drop, then you may feel harder to breathe than when you’re working out in warmer conditions. 

While breathing in through your nose help warm and humidify air, that’s not good when you breathe heavily. Best cold weather exercise tips from experts suggest that wrapping a scarf around your mouth will help trap water vapor when you breathe out to keep air moister when you continue to breathe.

#5. Keep your extremities protected 

Your head, hands, and feet easily get vulnerable to frostbite in cold weather as blood flow is concentrated in your body's core. 

Good tips for exercising in cold weather include putting on the mittens or gloves made out of wicking material and investing in exercise shoes that are a half size or one size larger to allow for thick thermal socks. It’s also necessary to consider the design of your shoes. Choose ones that are specially designed to withstand the winter elements.

Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

What are tips for exercising in cold weather?

Don't forget to wear a hat, a headband to protect your head, and a scarf to cover your neck.

All these accessories should be wool or synthetic instead of cotton to help keep sweat off. 

#6. Protect Your Skin 

Cold temperatures can leave your skin dried out. Hence, drink much water (about eight 8-ounce glasses per day) and apply moisturizing cream or lotion to sensitive areas like the tip of the nose, and ears. Cover your face with a running mask or scarf to block out biting winds. 

Don’t forget to wear sunscreen! This is one of the most useful tips for exercising in cold weather. Many people misunderstand that cold weather comes with no UVA and UVB rays. This is totally wrong. You can easily get sunburned in winter, especially if you exercise at high altitudes. 

#7. Wear safety gear 

Wearing reflective clothing is a good idea. You should be armed with safe and appropriate gear for each activity. Pick footwear with enough traction to prevent you from falling. If you go snowboarding and snowmobiling, put on a helmet.

To warm up your hands or feet, you can use chemical heat packs.

Tips for Exercising in Cold Weather

9 tips for exercising in cold weather

#8. Drink plenty of fluids

Hydration is crucial when it comes to cold weather exercise tips. Drink water before, during, and after your workout to keep yourself from being dehydrated due to sweating, breathing. Even if you don’t feel as thirsty during cold-weather workouts, you still need to replace those fluids by drinking water. This is one of the most valuable tips for exercising in cold weather from experts. 

#9. Warm Up And Stretching

One of the best cold-weather exercise tips is stretching. As your muscles tend to tighten in cold weather, which makes them more prone to injury. Try light activity like walking to get your blood flowing throughout your body and loosen your muscles. 

Conclusion

Are those safety tips for exercising in cold weather helpful for you? Keep a close eye on how your body feels while exercising to help prevent unexpected injuries. Shorten or skip your outdoor workout during weather extremes.