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A good workout routine can keep you warm

If a healthier you is part of your plan for the New Year, colder weather temperatures may present some questions about how to safely conduct an outdoor workout in frigid temperatures.

As with anything else in winter, it's not a grab-your-shirt-and-go activity, but the American Heart Association says it's a great way to boost your immunity  which is especially important during cold and flu season.

Cold injuries may be prevented, and cold weather workouts will be safer with proper preparation, education and response to changing weather conditions.

One of the first things to address will be clothing, according John Veal, III healthy living director for the Lawton Family YMCA.

"You want to wear something that is warm," Veal said. "You can pick up a lot of base layer items. They are tight and form fitting to the body, but they are still thick and keep the cool air off the body and keep you warm. At the same time, you need these to pull the sweat off the body as you are working out. That would be Step 1."

He also recommends doing your warm-up outside to warm your body in the environment you plan to exercise in.

"You should warm up anywhere from five to 15 minutes, probably closer to the 15 minutes  clearly longer than you would do in the summertime," Veal said. "Even with indoor warm-ups in the winter, if you're coming from outside, should always be a little bit longer on the warm-up, just to get the body moving and stretched out.

The Lawton Constitution

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