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Tips For Exercising In Cold Weather

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Tips For Exercising In Cold Weather

It seems as if winter is already here with all of the cold temperatures we’ve had lately. At Homberg Chiropractic and Wellness – your Knoxville chiropractor – we don’t let the temperatures stop us from exercising and hope you won’t either. By following certain principles of cold weather exercise, your winter outdoor activities can be both enjoyable and kind to your health. The following are  tips for exercising in cold weather:

  • Unfortunately for those eager for excuses, most people live in climates where the temperature is rarely cold enough to prevent humans from exercising outdoors, be it running, walking or mere yard work. Just dress warmly and get out there and enjoy it!
  • If you do live where the temperatures dip into the freezing zone, check weather conditions and wind chill before heading out. Temperature, wind and moisture, along with the length of time that you’ll be outside, are key factors in planning a safe cold-weather workout.
  • Keep your head and ears warm. Our greatest heat loss occurs through the head, so keeping it covered will help retain a substantial amount of body heat. Always take a hat with you, even if you do not think you will need it.
  • Keep your hands and feet dry and warm. Mittens are warmer than gloves. Water-resistant, windproof, lined mittens are best. Raising your heart rate will also help keep your extremities warm. When running in the snow, consider putting plastic bags over your socks.
  • Dress in layers. Dressing too warmly is a big mistake when exercising in cold weather. Exercise generates a considerable amount of heat — enough to make you feel like it’s much warmer than it really is. The evaporation of sweat, however, pulls heat from your body and you feel chilled. The solution? Dress in layers that you can remove as soon as you start to sweat and then put back on as needed. First, put on a thin layer of synthetic material, such as polypropylene, which draws sweat away from your body. Avoid cotton, which stays wet next to your skin. Next, add a layer of fleece or wool for insulation. Top this with a waterproof, breathable outer layer. You may need to experiment to find the right combination of clothing for you based on your exercise intensity. If you’re lean, you may need more insulation than someone who is heavier.
  • When running, walking, cycling, etc., start by going against the wind for the first half with the wind at your back for the second half.
  • Whenever possible, exercise in areas sheltered from the wind.
  • Never venture alone into remote areas. Tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return.
  • If possible, exercise at mid-day when it is warmest.
  • Wear some sort of reflective clothing or safety vest when running, walking or cycling after dark.

What are your tips for exercising in cold weather?

 

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