Baby, it’s cold outside! Now that the temperature has dropped significantly, you don’t have to ditch your outdoor workouts altogether (sorry, you’re not off the hook). However, there are some important things you must do to avoid injury, prevent frost-bite, and get the most out of your fit-time. These three tips will keep you on track this winter.
Invest in the proper workout gear. At first glance, you might be saying to yourself, of course I dress warmly. Don’t skip to the next section! Once the temperature drops below 45 degrees, your injury risk increases. You can easily pull a muscle or, God-forbid, suffer from hypothermia. To avoid these conditions, invest in exercise wear specifically designed for cold temperatures. You’ll need a long-sleeve shirt, pants, hats, and gloves, at a minimum. Remember, you have to keep your body temperature just right; you’ll sweat when you need to and avoid losing too much body heat. Cold weather gear can be pricey, but it will last a long time and this is one area where you don’t want to skimp. Be sure to catch the sales in the spring to stock up for the next year.
Watch your step. Black ice, slush, and wet pavement can trip you up, so before you go on that run, check the weather and road conditions. Stepping off curbs can be especially tricky; slow down and step off a curb with caution. If the grounds are very wet, opt for power walking instead of running. Make sure your footwear is weather-ready too. As a general rule, you should replace your workout shoes every six to 12 months. Label the inside of your shoe with the purchase date as a reminder to replace them within the recommended time period.
Workout indoors in extreme weather. If you can’t get outside due to the weather, there are some great workouts you can do at home. Try one of my all-time favorites, jumping rope. Jumping rope for 15 minutes is the equivalent of walking for 30 minutes. Have a jump rope contest with the kids or play Wii games designed to get your heart rate up; “Just Dance“ and “Zumba“ are great options.
As you age, exercise has to be part of your life regardless of the weather! Make the most of these winter months, get moving, and keep it up. Take the necessary steps to stay active during the winter season so you’ll be ready to spring into action in a few months!
[Valerie Merriweather (MHA, ACE, NASM) is Chief Executive Officer of Fitwell Training Solutions, a personal training and wellness company specializing in the health and fitness needs of families. She leads Fitwell Personal Boot Camp at Forest Knolls Elementary from April-September. She lives with her family on Playford Lane in the Forest Knolls community. Valerie can be reached at www.fitwellsolutions.com.] ■
© 2012 NFCCA [Source: https://nfcca.org/news/nn201202d.html]