Working Out When It's Cold Outside: Winter Exercise Guide

Working Out When It’s Cold Outside: Winter Exercise Guide

As the weather turns cooler, many fitness enthusiasts ask, “Can I still train outside when it’s cold?” The answer: yes! You just have to be prepared. With that in mind, here are our top tips for working out when it’s cold outside to help you stay active and safe.

Check the Forecast

Before heading out for any length of time, always check a weather app. Weather conditions change rapidly, turning sunny days into rainy, and cold days into wet and windy ones. Sometimes, the temperature drop dramatically.

Gather as much information as you can and bring the clothing and footwear needed to stay comfortable. Forecasts aren’t always accurate, so you’ll never regret bringing extra gear in case conditions change.

Dress in Layers

Ever start a hike feeling chilly only to wish you’d worn lighter clothing when you start sweating heavily after 10 minutes? It happens. The best plan for working out when it’s cold outside is to use layers.

Young woman choosing winter clothes

Start with something that wicks moisture away from the skin, then add a warmer layer. On top, wear something that breaks the wind or keeps precipitation out. You can add more layers between these as needed and remove clothes to stay comfortable.

Pay Attention to Your Hands and Feet

Cold hands and feet ruin winter workouts, especially if you’re holding fitness equipment or if your feet get wet. Pack extra gloves, dry socks, and even a pair of warm boots in your “backup kit.” In very cold weather, a face mask also take the edge off the air and make breathing easier.

Protect Your Head

You can lose a lot of heat through your scalp, and your ears freeze quickly. Take a few headbands or hats with you so you’ll pick the perfect option for the conditions. A scarf or neck gaiter also come in handy. Remember, you can get a sunburn on a cold day, so be sure to wear sunscreen.

Ease Into It

When working out in the cold, take extra time to warm up. Ensure your muscles and joints are ready before you start your workout. Take as much time as you need. You’ll know your warm-up is effective if you start breathing heavier and feel like removing a layer.

Young athletic woman warming up before her winter workout

Check Yourself Regularly

It’s great to train outside, but sometimes it’s just too cold for safety. Early signs of frostbite include throbbing, aching, and pins and needles. Skin becoming cold, hard, and pale. Hypothermia occurs when your body temperature is too low, so watch out for signs such as slurred speech, significant shivering, weakness, fatigue, and uncoordinated movement.

If you notice any of these symptoms, get inside quickly. If you have any concerns or don’t feel better, contact a healthcare provider immediately.

Have Fun!

Are you in the Concord area and looking for a fitness plan that keeps you active both indoors and outdoors during the cold months? At Amoskeag Fitness Club, we offer tailored fitness plans to help you stay fit no matter the weather.

Visit us to book your free consultation today and start your journey to better fitness!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to work out when it’s cold outside?

Yes, it is safe to work out when it’s cold outside as long as you are properly prepared. Dressing in layers, protecting your extremities, and paying attention to weather conditions and your body’s signals are essential.

How should I dress for outdoor workouts in cold weather?

Dress in layers. Start with a moisture-wicking base layer, add a warm middle layer, and top it off with a windproof or waterproof outer layer. Don’t forget to protect your hands, feet, and head.

What should I do if I start to feel too cold during my workout?

If you start to feel too cold, it’s important to seek shelter and warm up immediately. Signs of frostbite and hypothermia should be taken seriously. Always carry extra clothing and be aware of your body’s signals.

Can I get a sunburn while working out in the cold?

Yes, you can get a sunburn even in cold weather. The sun’s UV rays is strong, especially if there’s snow on the ground reflecting the sunlight. Always wear sunscreen to protect your skin.

What are the benefits of working out in cold weather?

Working out in cold weather can boost your mood, help you burn more calories, and improve your endurance. It also provides a unique opportunity to enjoy the beauty of the winter season and a refreshing change from indoor workouts.