With the unprecedented Winter chills we’re experiencing, don’t allow the sub-zero temperatures to slow down your motivation. There are barriers in all of our ways towards our fitness, and while the temperature is beyond our control, there are things we can control. Here at Xperience Fitness, we pride ourselves on breaking down barriers that stop us from reaching our goals. So here are some tips to stay warm when it’s cold.
Whether you are going outside for extended periods or not, ensure that your extremities are covered. Your feet, hands, and head will lose heat faster than your torso or legs. If you will be outside, wear thick socks to prevent the cold from seeping in through the frozen ground – once your feet get cold, go inside. Cover up as much exposed skin as possible, face included. If you’re going to be inside, start in layers, you can always take layers off as you get warm. In regards to shoes, when outside, make sure your shoes have good traction to avoid unexpected falls. If you’ll be traveling to your gym, keep a separate set of shoes for in the gym.
Warm-Up & Stretch
Before you step foot out the door, do a short 5-10 minute warm-up routine: Body-weight squats, calf raises, light running-in-place, etc. This allows your body temperature to raise in anticipation of the exercise to come and kickstarts healthy oxygen flow into your muscles. The stretching allows for more stable joints and tendons in a potentially less-forgiving environment. If you are indoors, it allows you shake off any lingering cold from the trek inside.
Cold air dries out your throat making you dehydrated faster. Your body needs the water to help regulate your internal body temperature. If you’re outside, keep the water warm or “room-temperature” at lowest, cold water will make the dehydration worse. If inside, you have less to worry about, and can have cold water, but still stay hydrated.
Keep Your Heart-Rate High
If you want to help stave off hypothermia, make sure you keep moving. The faster your heart-rate, the more warm blood is pumped through your system. Don’t push yourself too hard and risk an accident or over-doing it especially in layers. If you’re indoors, a higher heart-rate will equal more calories burned, which is usually the point of exercise.
Dressing, prepping, traveling, all of these precautions take time. Set aside enough time to change, warm-up (yourself and/or your vehicle), travel, change again if necessary. Plan it all out beforehand. It’s too cold outside for you to take any chances.
After your workout, make sure to stretch appropriately. Your muscles will likely need to be reintroduced to the cold again at some point in the day, and you want to ensure they are in the best shape possible before subjecting them to such.
Stay warm and safe out there!