Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Exercising in the cold

My father jogged before the word was invented--he used to come back with icecicles hanging off him in winter, nose running as fast as his legs had.

The National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA,org) has some tips on working out in the Hawk.

There is such a thing as "cold injuries." They come in three categories: (1) decreased core temps (hypothermia), (2) freezing of the extremities (frostbite), and (3) nonfreezing injuries of the extremities (chillblains, trench foot).

HYPOTHERMIA. Vigorous shivering, increased blood pressure, core body temp less than 98.6 F. Remove wet clothing and put on warm and dry clothing or blankets and put the person in a shelter. Provide warm, nonalcoholic fluids. Do not massage limbs--this can make frostbite worse if the person has it.

FROSTBITE. Swelling or mottled gray skin, tingling or burning. Wrap the area in warm clothing. If sensation or normal color does not return in a few minutes, immerse area in warm (not hot) water bath for 15-30 mins. So not massage or expose to direct heat such as a heating pad or fire.

CHILLBLAINS. Small red bumps, swelling, tenderness, itching and pain.  Remove wet clothing, wash and dry the area gently, elevate it, and cover with loose clothing or blankets. Do not disturb the blisters or massage or chafe the area.

TRENCH FOOT. This comes from cold, wet environments over 12 hours to 3-4 days. Burning, tingling, itching, blotches, swelling, blisters. Clean and dry the feet, apply warm packs or soak in warm water for five mins.  Put on dry socks.

Always wear layers of clothing in cold weather--be sure to allow evaporation.

Eat a well balanced diet and stay hydrated. Forget the booze.

I will be back with more next Monday--stay safe, warm, and merry, my dear readers.

No comments: