Posts Tagged ‘cold weather running’

Burning Fat in Winter Workouts

Friday, January 29th, 2010

I researched a great tip to pass on to your clients:

The age-old question is, ‘Do we burn more fat exercising outdoors in colder weather or in hotter weather?’ I have heard professionals banter back and forth on this issue for as long as I been a gym rat. During this brutal Midwestern winter I decided to do some research on this and I gave up with the definitive answer. I found the definitive study on this in the journal, Sports Medicine 1991 issue. The study was conducted at the Naval Medical Research Institute. They found that fat metabolism was actually slowed down in cold weather. They hypothesized that the slow down in metabolism could be linked to the constriction of blood vessels in the peripheral fatty tissues when exercise is done in the cold. The study also found interesting results on breathing outside. (Don’t we all feel that are breathing is so much deeper and cleaner when we run in the cold weather?) They found that indeed, upon initial contact with cold weather the volume of air inhaled and exhaled in the first minute is higher but soon after continuing to exercise (run) in the cold it returns to rates comparable to what it is when we exercise (run) in warm weather. (Hmmmmm……) They also found that heart rate is generally lower in cold weather exercise.

This is great information to pass onto clients at all levels when they ask this question of you. Now you have the definitive response and the research to cite. Run with it. (Excuse the pun.)

Dr. John Mayer, President