How to Prepare for a Cold-Weather Workout

How to Prepare for a Cold-Weather Workout

How to Workout During Cold Weather


During the colder months, you probably don’t want to turn down the heat on your workout routine. When it’s cold outside, it shouldn’t have to mean hanging up your running shoes, and waiting for the next season. It’s okay to workout during the chillier months (and even encouraged!), and we want to let you know how to prepare for the cold, safely.

Ellie contributor and three-time Olympian Rosey Edeh outlines the pros and cons of a cold-weather workout. Very importantly, she goes over some of the ways in which you can prepare your body for an effective workout, when the temperature has dropped. Please be reminded that it’s always best to speak with a health specialist before starting any new exercise routine — especially if you are going to be working out in a cold environment. Our bodies — and especially our lungs — tend to react differently to the crisper air. 

Here are some of Rosey’s tips:

  1. Get hyped up before you step outside; give yourself an edge by doing a mini warm-up inside. Jumping jacks, burpees, jumping rope, and a few minutes of dynamic stretching raise your body temperature and promotes muscle elasticity. The endorphin boost from the pre-workout exercises is like a mid-afternoon shot of caffeine.
  2. Cover your ears and fingers if it's below freezing and there's a windchill factor. It’s important to layer up and insulate, as well. 
  3. To keep your toes warm, you’ve got to make sure they have plenty of wiggle room, so no socks that will constrict the toes! Thermal socks made especially for running are best. Being able to wiggle your toes means the blood continues to flow, the skin-on-skin and toe-on-toe contact cause a bit more friction, and you'll be able to generate some heat for your feet. 
  4. Waterproof materials are a great idea if you’re going to be out in wetter conditions. 

So, don’t give up on the days when the air is colder — think of it as another opportunity to keep the monotony out of your fitness routine! Staying indoors is a cozy option (and we are definitely here for it, sometimes!), but who wants to stay cooped up, when you can be outside enjoying the elements? Grab your favorite layering pieces, make sure to cover your extremities, prepare against the elements, and take your motivation to the great outdoors!

This cold-weather workout advice was contributed exclusively to Ellie by three-time Olympian and National Coaching Certification Program sprint and hurdle coach Rosey Edeh. She is a six-time Canadian 400m hurdles champion and record holder. A news anchor and TV personality, as seen on CNN, MSNBC, and Global News (Canada), Rosey has founded her own award-winning production company, Micha Muse Media, inc. She is working on a project involving women in sports. Instagram:  @roseyedeh