KENNEWICK, WA - If you're thinking about heading outdoors to exercise or even shovel the sidewalk with these very cold temperatures we have, you might want to consider a few things before you do so.
Whether your are planning to shovel your driveway or considering going for a jog or walk, make sure you are wearing the proper gear. That includes multiple layers, hat and a scarf. If the temperature is below 20 degrees, you need to have gloves on in order to reduce your risk of frostbite.
In terms of exercising in the cold, you should check with your doctor if you have any respiratory or heart condition before working out outside.
"If you have asthma, you are more likely to have some bronchial constriction which makes it harder to breathe... and so it does increase the risk for a respiratory condition or even a heart attack," says Kacie Sams, physical therapist at Lourdes. "You want to be extra careful, make sure you warm up get the airways going and breathing and that will keep you safe."
Another thing Sams says to monitor is how hydrated you are, you can easily get dehydrated in the cold. Remember to drink water!
Proper gear for running, walking or exercising outside includes hat, scarf, layers, and Dri-Fit material (something that will wick moisture from your body.)
It is also important to wear foot gear with a lot of traction as it is easy to slip on ice and snow.