Winter shouldn’t prevent us from enjoying outdoor activities, but with increasingly erratic weather, where it can be -15°C in the morning and then raining in the afternoon, it becomes necessary to take a few precautions.
Here are some tips:
- Wear several thin layers of clothing so that you can remove or add one as needed. Choose fabrics that wick away perspiration and humidity.
- Protect your extremities (head, hands and feet) because they are the most vulnerable to chilblain. Mitts are usually more effective at keeping hands warm than gloves.
- Remember to protect your ears and nose!
- If you’re planning to be out for a few hours, bring a backpack with water, a snack and a change of clothes, including boots if possible. You can add a fleece blanket as well.
- If your clothes get wet, change into dry clothes as soon as possible.
- If it’s very cold out, take regular breaks where you go indoors to warm up. You can also use heat packs that you can put in your gloves or boots to keep your extremities warm.
Even in the winter, you have to protect your skin from the sun:
- Wear sunglasses. Choose lenses that increase contrast and depth perception.
- Wear sunscreen on your face. This will have two benefits – to moisturize your skin so it doesn’t get dried out by the cold air, and also to protect it from sunburn. As the days get longer again in the winter, the rays of the sun get strong enough to cause sunburns. Check the expiry date if you’re using a tube from last summer; an expired lotion won’t protect you!
- Apply a moisturizing lip balm.
People with heart or lung disease should use extreme caution, especially in very cold weather, because the cold can trigger symptoms such as an angina or asthma attack. People with such conditions must be even more careful to adapt the intensity of the activity to the weather.
And sometimes, no matter how healthy you are, it’s best to opt for an indoor activity!