SpecOps Fitness & Training

  • Phone: 703-655-5134
  • Mail: specopsftnss@gmail.com
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  • Address: 8723 Stockton Pkwy, Alexandria, Virginia 22308

Cold Weather Exercise

Exercising during the colder months can be difficult, but you don’t always have to stay inside. If you plan right and know how the cold affects your body you can still get the most out of your workout.

Hypothermia is one of the main concerns when exercising in the cold. There are two main ways in which heat loss is regulated, insulation (body fat and clothing) and environmental factors (temperature, wind, etc).

Those with a higher body fat percentage will lose less heat since they are more insulated. Even if you have more body fat though it is still important to wear the necessary layers. Your body loses about 50% of its heat from the head so a hat is definitely important. You also want to make sure to dress in layers and wear clothes that can keep air in but let sweat get out. Try to avoid items that are heavy cotton or tightly woven because these trap in moisture. Keeping your hands and feet warm are also important, in cold temperatures the body can take blood away from the outer extremities in order to keep the internal organs warm, so gloves and good socks are a must.

Before you go outside though even if you have the proper clothing, make sure to check the weather. Things you want to take notice of are the temperature and wind chill factor. If conditions are listed as dangerous avoid exercising outside.

Your body also preforms differently in the cold than it does in normal temperatures. Your muscles require more energy in the colder weather so it is possible that you may fatigue quicker. Since the energy to power your workout comes from glycogen stores consuming carbohydrates before hand is a good idea to keep your energy going. It is also important to refuel within 30 minutes of finishing your workout to help aid in recovery.

Make sure you are also hydrating properly. Exercising in the cold can you make not feel as thirsty. However, you are still losing liquid through the air you breath and sweating. To keep your performance up and to prevent cramps, keep drinking water.

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