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reviewed 8/6/2018

Winter workouts: True or false?

Wintry weather doesn't need to freeze out your workouts. You can—and should—be active all winter long. But before you bundle up for a walk or run, test your knowledge about cold-weather exercise.

True or false: Exercise makes heat leave your body quickly, so it's best to wear the warmest coat you have.

False. It's the moistures on your body that conducts heat away in cold conditions. So stay warm outside by dressing in layers. That way you can take them off as you begin to sweat and put them back on as you cool down. Your first layer should be something that wicks moisture away from your skin. Then add a layer of fleece, followed by a thin waterproof layer.

True or false: If you have heart disease, it's important to check with your doctor doing any kind of exercise in cold weather.

True. Exerting yourself in cold weather puts extra strain on your heart. So cardiac patients should get a doctor's OK before heading outside for a wintry workout.

True or false: If you want to opt out of the outdoors altogether, you can get just as good a workout in your home as in a gym.

True. Even in a tight space, you can get a full-body workout with a jump rope and hand weights or resistance bands. Try body-weight exercises too, like lunges, planks and push-ups.

True or false: It's OK to skip sunscreen when exercising in winter weather.

False. You can get sunburned just as easily in the winter as in the summer, especially if there's snow on the ground. So slather sunscreen on any exposed parts of your body to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.

True or false: A cold day can make you muscles tighter.

True. So be sure to spend time stretching and warming up before starting your workout.

Whether you're inside or outside, wintry weather can be hard on your skin. Learn how to give yours the TCL it needs before spring arrives.

Protect your skin from winter weather

Sources: American Council on Exercise; American Heart Association

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