As winter finally settles in and access to gyms and fitness studios may become limited due to weather and circumstances, many of us may be shifting our workouts outside into the fresh but sometimes frosty-cold air. Cold weather doesn't have to stop you from exploring outdoor exercise. Let's learn how to dress for winter and athletic wear layering to keep you warm and comfortable while you enjoy the crisp air or winter landscapes.
Layers Are Key
To stay warm and dry during winter outdoor workouts is as easy as learning how you can properly layer your clothing. When you wear your clothing in a specific combination of layers, this helps your body regulate your temperate, keeps moisture away from your skin, and keeps you dry and warm even while sweating. The layers you'll wear can depend on the activity, matched to the weather or what your personal preference is. But the primary three layers to consider and have are:
- Base Layer – Your base layer should be athleisure designed to wick moisture and sweat away from your skin.
- Mid Layer – This layer gives you insulation and keeps you warm.
- Outer Layer – This layer should let moisture and perspiration escape while simultaneously blocking the wind and repelling water.
For the base layer, you'll want something that's in direct contact with your skin without being uncomfortable. Tight-fitting and wicking material is ideal for keeping you comfortable. Your mid-layer should be a bit looser but still comes in contact with your base layer, as well as being moisture wicking. Your outer layer, sometimes referred to as a shell, can be amazingly thin but still waterproof and breathable. Typical materials in an outer layer can be ePTFE membranes, polyurethane films, or specially coated to keep rain and snow-melt from getting you damp.
Other Winter Athletic Wear Tips
The bulk of your body heat gets stored in your core, where blood flow is concentrated. That leaves your extremities more vulnerable to cold. Consider adding mittens, headbands, hats, a neckwarmer that can be pulled over your nose, and good socks, too. Depending on your activity and how icy the terrain gets, you might want to add traction cleats to keep your feet steady on the run.
This winter, embrace the brisk but beautiful weather by being prepared! This winter, don't let the cold stand in the way of exceeding your gains!