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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Winter Workouts Outside

Merry Christmas Ya'll! I'm looking outside my kitchen window, enjoying a view of the frozen bow river and the beautiful Banff Rockies. Outside, joggers are braving the winter trails and their dogs are trotting happily along beside.

 When exercising outdoors in the cold it is important to remember that there are some modifications to make. 

When ever I find a new route to run, I always map it out prior to hitting the trails. I love a web site that counts the distance of your run as well as shows you a visual representation of the feasibility of a run. If a trail is closed map my run will let you know. 

Warming up in cold weather is important. I will do my stretched and some jumping jacks inside before I completely gear up and head outside. Once out running, I will start jogging at a slow pace and allow my body to adjust by taking short 15sec breaks for the first 10 minutes. 

Your running pace will naturally be slower in cold weather, just because it is harder to breath. Don't be hard on your self. The distance I can comfortably run outside in the cold is a lot shorter than it is in the summer. AND THAT IS OKAY. The snow covered trails add a component of stability to your workout and challenge your core in a different manner. Have fun, and watch your footing.

When exercising in the cold it is easy to forget to hydrate, you can't feel your self sweating as much in the winter especially if you are all bundled up. Stop for water, and be sure to drink up when you return from your trot. 

I like to finish my winter workout at home, inside. I find it easier to cool down when I am not terrified of freezing. Stretch inside, and allow your body a good ten minutes to adjust before shocking it with a hot shower.  

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