Expert Author Kasia Lanucha

Walking is one of the finest forms of exercise available. It is easy on our joints and it allows us to explore our environment in ways that more strenuous forms of exercise would not allow. The gentle nature of walking also encourages more consistency than other activities. This resolve, however, is tested during the winter months for those who live in the Northern latitudes. For people who live in colder regions winter signals a difficult challenge for their walking exercise program. If you would like to continue walking when the temperatures drop to frigid levels, here are a few tips to help you in your quest.

Before starting any walking program indoors or outdoors, it is always important to first get your doctor's approval before you move to the next step

Many people are aware of the recommendations on how to dress when running in cold temperatures. Experts tell us that it is better to dress in layers of clothing so that we can better regulate our temperature by removing layers when we get too hot.

Walking in the winter is different from running in the winter. Running is a more vigorous activity and there's a tendency to sweat a great deal. This is a why the recommendation is always to wear several layers of moisture absorbing clothing such as cotton and not to wear warm winter jackets because you will sweat too much as your body temperature rises. When walking the same heat is not generated as with running so it is possible to wear a few layers and then top it off with a winter jacket

In all situations it is necessary to cover up exposed areas of skin when the temperatures are very cold and when there is also a high wind chill factor.

A high wind chill factor is a good reason to pack up and take your walking indoors, in a mall or in a gym. Risking exposure to extreme temperatures is simply not worth the trouble. After all, you have to remember that you are doing this for your health.

If there is no windchill warning but it is still very cold you can continue walking outside if you remember to keep well covered with warm clothing. You should start by choosing warm headgear that gives you the option to cover up your face. After taking care of your head, you will also find that it is the extremities that are most susceptible to cold, so it is best that you wear mitten gloves to limit the heat loss that occurs between each finger with regular gloves. It's also important that you wear good shoes with a double layer of socks.

Whenever you walk outside in cold weather it is always crucial to have quick access to public bathrooms and shelter close to the route. In this way you will always have access to aid if an emergency arises.

Walking outside should be avoided in situations where there is a lot of ice on the ground. Ice storms occur during the winter months, in particular on the Northeast coast of the United States. These storms can leave a sheet of ice on the ground and in these circumstances it is best to avoid walking outside as the terrain can become incredibly slippery and the danger of falls is very high.

When the conditions are right, however, walking in the winter comes with unexpected pleasures. Walking through your favorite park you will often see far fewer people than during the summer and you can appreciate how the snow will change the landscape in so many interesting ways.

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