Dressing for Cold Weather Workouts
As the seasons change, and the weather gets colder you may think that you have to hang up your outdoor workout gear until the coming spring. But what if I told you that you didn’t have to do that again this year and that you can actually continue to workout outside through the winter? Crazy, right!? Well you absolutely CAN continue your outdoor workout routines if you’re dressed for the occasion.
You might also be wondering why you would even want to exercise outside when it’s this cold. During the winter months, not only is it a lot chillier but sunlight is also limited throughout the day. Getting outside and absorbing whatever sunlight available to us is so important for our wellbeing. Even though it’s cold, we can still absorb the UV rays provided by sunlight that help to produce vitamin D! Take advantage of the early morning light, bundle yourself (and maybe your kiddo) up and get outside!
The key here is layers, you will absolutely work up a sweat even when exercising in the coldest of climates and you’ll need to remove layers easily so that you don’t overheat! With that being said something to keep in mind: when dressing for a cold outdoor workout, dress as if it were 20oF warmer outside. This will help prevent overheat from too many layers in the first place and allow you to workout distraction free!
When dressing for all outdoor activities you’ll need to start with a base layer. Depending on the temperature, a long or short sleeve top and a solid pair of pants/leggings. Thermal leggings here are another great option if you’re in especially cold climates of 30oF or below! Make sure the clothing in this base layer is relatively tight fitting to allow for easy layering of additional clothing.
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Next, we will add a second layer for insulation. This layer should include something a little bit looser and not as tight fitting to allow for range of motion during your workout. It can be easy to become too restricted when layering too many tight fitting options. Adding a light sweatshirt or fleece here would be appropriate and potentially an extra layer of loose-fitting pants. Again, if you are in colder climates you may want to opt for more fleece lined, thermal options for extra warmth.
Lastly you’ll want an outer layer that acts more as a shell for protection against impending weather. For us here in the PNW that might be a waterproof coat to protect us from rain storms, snow, or a fun combination of the two! This layer can include a water resistant down jacket or any other weather proof shell you have in your closet.
Another important thing you might want to consider are your feet! Put on a warm pair of socks and sturdy shoes to keep the wet, cold weather out. Gloves, hat/ear muffs, and a scarf may also be appropriate depending on the chill in the air. Light-weight, exercise specific items will be best as you will heat up quickly and will likely need to remove the layers you’ve built up so you do not overheat!