How to dress in cold weather, according to experts

YesYou’ve probably been there before: bundled up and wearing so many layers you already start to sweat. Well, it turns out that bundling up in really tight clothes for an outdoor workout isn’t necessarily the best way to dress in cold weather. The reason? Tight clothing can slow your circulation, reduce your body’s natural warming processes, and prevent hot air from insulating you inside your clothes.

There is nothing wrong with regrouping, don’t get me wrong. However, it becomes a problem if something restricts your range of motion, gives you a tingling sensation, or leaves marks on your skin. You shouldn’t have any red lines or indentation marks on your skin. There should be some space between the item and your body for the air to keep you warm. So if your strategy for dressing for cold weather workouts involves super tight clothing, we outline a more effective method below.

How does the body keep warm, anyway

Humans and other mammals maintain their body heat through processes such as sweating, chills, or behavioral adjustments (like removing a jacket or grabbing a blanket), according to Statpearls, an online medical research library. There are also other ways in which your body maintains homeostasis. Your cells generate heat by converting stored energy into heat. This heats up your blood which circulates throughout your body.

When you are cold, you start to shake, which causes your skeletal muscles to contract. Your body stores energy through a process called vasoconstriction, which occurs when tiny muscles in your blood vessels constrict to slow blood flow. The point is, reduced circulation means that where the blood doesn’t reach, it won’t be as hot. Do you know how easily your hands and feet can get cold? These outer ends are among the first to experience a reduced temperature.

In addition, the hair on your body traps the heat that you generate. Do you know that goosebumps feeling? It’s actually an attempt to keep you warm. Tiny hairs all over your body exist for many reasons, and insulation is one of them. The heat your body generates warms the air closest to your skin. These tiny hairs trap that hot air and keep you toasty warm.

Why is this important for your wardrobe choices

Tight clothes are not the most efficient items to wear as they make it harder for blood to flow, and they don’t work in tandem with the body’s existing heating process. “Blood circulation is a necessity for exercising and warming the body and just, in general, to be alive,” says Jordan Allison, PT, DP, cold weather athlete, ultracrunner, marathoner, trail runner from Colorado In Motion. “If you slow down, you won’t be able to heat yourself as efficiently, and you will also have a hard time regulating your temperature if you do different activities.

When dressing for cold weather, it is important to consider how the body keeps warm. Since you naturally radiate heat, the best way to insulate yourself is to dress in clothes that trap hot air in your clothes. For example, mittens are more effective than gloves because they have more space to trap warm air. If you wear tight clothes like socks that are too small, layers of tight pants, or shirts that suck your body, they won’t leave room between the fabric and your skin.

For optimal toasting, there should be some space for this warm air generated by your body to radiate onto your skin and collect in your insulating clothing. Clothes that are too tight or too thin don’t give that warm air a chance to drag around your body and keep you warm. And, the tighter these clothes, the more they will slow your blood circulation, which will prevent your body from warming up effectively.

What to wear instead

“I would encourage people who exercise or go outside in cold weather to wear mittens and diapers instead of compression garments. This is because you can better adapt your clothes to your body temperature and to anything changing like snow, wind or rain, ”says Dr. Allison. He adds that blood circulation is essential for your body to provide oxygen to your muscles during exercise, which is important for power, endurance, strength, and recovery.

Diapers are incredibly effective, adds Dr. Allison. “Just make sure you’re layering with no tightness or shape fit in mind. You also don’t want to be weighed down by a bunch of tight, heavy clothes. The best guideline to consider is less is more,” This is why wool is a great material to wear in winter, it locks in heat and keeps you insulated quite effectively.

Dr Allison also recommends that you check the weather before going out. Waterproof clothing can be essential in keeping your body warm if you go for a run in the winter and it will rain. Sweating too much in your winter clothes can also help cool you down faster, he adds. Staying warm has many benefits, including preventing injuries, improving performance, and being able to stay outside in the cold while doing the sport you love, for longer.

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