Just because it’s gotten cold outside doesn’t mean your workout has to lose any heat. Winter walking, walking in weather and other winter walking safety tips is today’s topic of choice.

Should you walk in winter?

Depending on where you live winter can vary as much as humans do. If you live in a more temperate environment, then bitter cold is not something you often deal with. For people with 4 seasons or a longer cold season you have to adjust to the temperature- including winter.

You definitely shouldn’t let mere chilly temperatures stop your fitness routine. Walking in winter has benefits. You can burn up to 34% more calories on your cold walking trips than a moderate temperature. It can also be helpful for lowering high blood pressure. You will usually sweat less and on normal walking surfaces you can expect your heart to work easier than in hot weather.

But it’s cold!

Yes, that is very true, especially in certain areas. Where I am, winter often can have highs in the teens (under -6 C). So, you should definitely dress appropriately. I recommend layers. I’m not saying dress like Ralphie from A Christmas Story where you have trouble moving correctly. Generally if it’s in the lower degrees I would say wear two layers of top and two layers of bottom plus a warm coat.

If you go on a longer walk and the sun starts to make you uncomfortable, you have the ability to shed one of the layers. Also, if it’s snowing, drizzling or raining, you may find winter gloves of great use.

What about ice?

No one is saying go out in a snow storm or when the sidewalks are too slick. Most of the winter you should be fine to take a good walk. If you happen to need to trek through some snow, wear good treaded warm shoes or boots. Ice is another matter. Unless the slick walking surfaces are going to last more than a week, it would be best to do some indoor walking or other light aerobic activity instead of risking a fall or other accident.

If you decide to pursue walking on ice look into exceptionally good footwear designed specifically for gripping slick surfaces.

When to just say no to walking?

You now know to not walk in the ice without proper preparedness, but there are other times you shouldn’t walk in the winter. Those times aren’t many, but I’ll list them.

  • During a storm- snow, thunder or ice.
  • At night- icy patches can be practically invisible. Even if it hasn’t been very wet, ice can still form in patches.
  • If you’re ill.
  • If you don’t have adequate clothing.
  • If you suffer from untreated cold induced asthma

So, bundle up

There you have it. You should not only continue to walk in the winter, but you could even improve you endurance and overall fitness. Take advantage of the cooler temperatures and sport your jacket whenever you need it.

Can’t wait to see you strolling along,


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