Don't Freeze Your Routine
Those chilly winds tell you to cover your plants, put on the snow tires and store the patio furniture. But, don't pack up your fitness activities - winterize them instead. Here's how:

Keep as much of your activity outdoors as possible. Snow, sleet and freezing temperatures take their toll on scheduled hikes and runs so build in as much outside activity as you can. When you can, run to the gym instead of drive. Walk the dog more frequently.

Wear layers of outdoor apparel. The first layer or two must wick sweat and moisture from the skin or you'll be cold and miserable. The next layers protect you from the wind and rain. High tech fabrics provide great, lightweight barriers so you can wear less and stay warm.

Remember your hat and gloves. You lose a lot of heat through your head, hands and feet. Keep them covered and dry.

Cover your mouth. Use a scarf to warm the air before it gets to your lungs, especially if you are prone to upper respiratory problems.

Stay hydrated. You may not feel as "thirsty" as in the summer heat but cold air can be very dry so drink water or a sports beverages before, during and after you jog.

Check with your doc. Cold temperatures can trigger exercise-induced asthma and other problems like check pains. Get a medical opinion if you have physical concerns.

Sport shades. The glare from ice and snow can damage your eyes. Even a cloudy day beams down rays. Wear polarized sunglasses.

Remove body piercings. Metal nose rings and other exposed piercings can increase the risk of frostbite.

Watch for warning signs. Shivering is the first sign that you are headed down the road to hypothermia. Don't wait for more signs because one of them is being too confused to make the right decision.

Don't be road kill. Fewer daylight hours, overcast skies and windy weather make it tougher for drivers to see you. Bike and outdoor shops sell flashing lights you can attach to your hat or shoes plus reflective materials to stick on apparel. Invest in a reflective vest that brightly signals your presence plus offers some wind and water resistance.

Pick a new activity. If the temperature drops below zero or the wind chill is below minus 20, Mother Nature does not want you. Be sure you've selected a substitute activity for when those winter winds howl. Sign up for a basketball league, take a spinning class or learn to bowl. Some Salsa dance lessons now will have you looking good on the beach next summer.