With winter comes many changes that may impact your normal exercise routine. It’s important to adapt to these changes – from the rapid dip in temperature to cold winds and snow – to protect yourself from illness and injury. Winter conditions can trigger underlying health conditions and often make for unstable environments for exercise.

 

Luckily, you don’t have to let cold weather spell the end of your exercise routine. You can stay safe, healthy, and motivated with these easy winter workout tips.

Slow down. Snow, ice, sleet, and rain can make your usual running or walking path unpredictable. Slow down and find a rhythm that is easy and comfortable. A slower pace will also help you stay aware of hazards and gives you time to find stable footing to avoid slips and falls.

 

Timing is Everything. When days are short it may be harder to exercise during the daylight. If running or walking in the dark, make sure to wear reflective, fluorescent gear use a headlamp, or carry a flashlight so you can see and be seen. Also be aware of weather conditions such as high winds, blizzards, and extreme cold that make outdoor workouts dangerous.

 

Dress in layers. Wear layers made of wind and water-proof, insulating, and moisture-wicking materials to protect you from the elements and account for your rapidly changing body temperature. Make sure these layers can be easily removed as soon as you start to sweat and then put back on as needed. This will protect you from overheating as well as frostbite and hypothermia.

 

Bring a Friend. Your friend can keep you motivated, provide a second set of eyes to look out for hazards, and help you out if you ever became ill or injured during your workout. Both you and anyone you’re with should be well aware of what to do in an emergency and how to get help.

 

Make sure to take a look at these tips before your next winter workout. They may be the difference between getting in shape and getting in trouble!