In harsh, sub-zero winter conditions, your body needs to adapt over time in order to be able to handle the cold and maintain a good body temperature for the longest time possible. On a physiological level, your body reacts differently depending on the outside temperature. In the winter, your body is able to adapt to the cold over time. However, in order for this to happen, you need to follow some simple guidelines in order to stay warm during your run.
Tips to soothe dry skin:
Oil therapy: Rub on some olive, almond or coconut oil and massage lightly on to your hands, legs and the rest of your body before heading for a shower. If time permits, heat the oil and then apply. Post shower, use a light moisturiser/sunscreen, because winter sun isn’t any less harsh.
Scoop some milk cream: Milk cream makes for a very good moisturiser. Mix a few drops of lime, a tsp. of milk and two tsp. of milk cream and rub onto your hands and legs. Leave it on for a while before you head for a shower. You’ll see the difference immediately.
The good ol’ curd: Curd makes for an excellent skin hydrant, and its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties will help soothe your dry, itchy skin. Apply curd just as it is or mix it with some honey and a few drops of lime. Leave it on for at least 10 minutes before you wash it off. It is sure to do wonders for your skin.
Honey helps lock in moisture, has antioxidant and anti-microbial properties, which makes it a sought after ingredient in many over-the-counter skincare products. Why shell out money on those, when you can buy yourself a bottle of honey (which is cheaper) and use it to treat your skin. Lightly heat 2 tsp. of honey any apply it onto your skin (face, hands, legs) while warm. Leave it on for 15 minutes, and then wash it off. There’s nothing better your skin can ask for.
Dab on some aloe vera: If you don’t have an aloe plant at home as yet, then make a trip to the nearest nursery and get one, because aloe is super good for your skin! After bath, slice a piece of aloe, squeeze all the gel out and apply onto your face, hands or legs. It will not only moisturise your skin, it will also form a protective layer that will keep impurities from entering your pores. Although aloe is a good skin hydrant, it can leave your skin feeling tight. So you might want to dab on some moisturiser.
Go the milky way: Keep aside a 4 tsp. of raw milk before you put it to boil for your morning coffee/tea Add a few drops of rose water/ lime and rub it all over your body and wash with cold water. Do this twice a day. And your skin will feel baby soft.
A vitamin-E boost! Make a trip to your chemist and buy some vitamin-E capsules (they don’t cost much!). Cut out 2 capsules, squeeze out the oil, mix a few drops of lime juice and apply all over your body. Take a shower and feel the difference.
Stock up on glycerine: Glycerine helps absorb and retain moisture, so it would be a good idea to buy a bottle from your nearest chemist. Mix a teaspoon of glycerine with a few drops of lime and massage onto your skin. Leave it on for a few minutes before you wash it off.
A serving of coconut milk? Coconut milk not only reduces skin dryness, but also helps combat dark spots and blemishes. If you have time to spare, make some fresh coconut milk at home or buy one of those packages ones. Rub it onto your face and body, and leave it overnight. Make sure to spread out an old bed-sheet and pillow cover.
Top tip for dry skin:
Once you’ve done either of these treatments a couple times, you must pay attention to exfoliating dead cells. Use a loofah or buy a body scrub that isn’t very rough on your skin (apricot or walnut) and scrub your body at least once a week.
Maintain body heat during your run
When it’s cold, the human body tends to lose warmth, although physiological reactions (vasodilation, shivering, shaking, etc.) do help to limit heat loss. To keep your body as well-protected as possible, it is important to effectively isolate it from both humidity – whether internal (sweat) or external (mist, rain or snow) – and cold and protect it from the wind.
A few reminders:
- Wet or damp garments cause you to get cold at a rate 25 to 30 times faster than room temperature air. These items lose 99% of their insulating abilities when wet.
- The combination of low outside air temperature and wind of 30 km/h is equivalent to glacial temperatures for runners (e.g. the temperature on the skin is at -6 ° degrees). These weather conditions make it harder to warm up.
- If some parts of your body, like your head, neck, abdomen, hands and feet, are not protected from the chilly air, your body will get cold quickly.
Example: Warm blood circulates through your brain during a run. Since the cranial bones are poor insulators, they cannot keep in the warmth that is produced. If you don’t cover this part of your body, you can lose 50 to 70% of your warmth through your head