How to adjust when exercise in chilly weather leaves you cold

Working out in extreme temperatures — hot or cold — is always tricky and requires adjustments to your routine. One downfall of cold weather exercise is that our bodies automatically go into hibernation mode, craving fat and relaxation rather than a good workout. Luckily, on the other hand, cold weather seems more inviting than hot when getting hot and sweaty, but caution should still be taken before going out in chilly temps. And with things cooling down, here’s a short list of what to mull over before braving the great outdoors.

Dress in layers and cover up

Clothing is probably the most important factor to consider when venturing out. Dailyspark.com recommends layering clothing to make it easier to adjust your body temperature. This can be tricky, as too much clothing can result in sweating which increases body chill, and not enough body coverage can result in risks such as frostbite or hypothermia. Stick with light fabric to avoid excessive sweating. Most body heat is lost through one’s head, neck and hands, and so covering these areas is especially important.

Don’t do out at all if it’s too cold

The Boston Globe says to check both temperature and windchill. If it falls below about -28 degrees Celsius, you shouldn’t risk the health risk.

Pick the right footwear

Slippery sidewalks and wet conditions can both be dangerous. ATI Physical Therapy recommends looking for dry, tract surfaces and to consider looking for waterproofing features in your running shoes to keep your feet dry and warm.

Don’t forget to stay hydrated even if you’re not hot

It’s easy to forget to drink water when you don’t feel overheated, but hydration is just as important as always when you’re losing body fluid through sweating. Livestrong.com recommends two cups of water about an hour before exercise, another cup 15 minutes before, and another cup every 20 minutes or so during.

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