How to Dress for Outdoor Winter Workouts

We’ve gotten used to taking our workouts outdoors this year…but not during the winter. After some research and gear-testing, here’s how we’re dressing to stay comfortable while we skip the gym (and brave the elements).

First things first: your Intake Kit. Here’s why—

Breathing through your nose is particularly important in cold weather–
your nose is responsible for humidifying and conditioning the air
you breathe before it reaches your lungs, and the nitric oxide produced
by your paranasal sinuses helps kill pathogens. This means cold air is warmed,
causing less tissue irritation, and more airborne germs are filtered out
than if you breathe through your mouth.


We like a merino wool base layer because it’s soft, lightweight, antimicrobial, and temperature-regulating. It won’t smell like sweat after the first mile, and it’ll still keep you warm even if it gets wet. If wool irritates your skin, try a polypropylene base layer. It’s moisture-wicking, so it’ll prevent that uncomfortable sweat-chill we all know.


This is where you’ll want some ventilation. A lightweight top with zippered or mesh sides to create airflow will help excess sweat evaporate, and prevent condensation from building up between layers.


Don’t worry about warmth here (your mid and base layers have got you covered) and instead opt for a thin, weather-resistant top layer. You’ll want something waterproof, windproof, and lightweight. A good length will cover your hips slightly to help keep moisture from dripping onto your legs.


  • A wool balaclava is a big winter multitasker: it protects your face from windchill, it further helps condition and humidify the wintery air you’re breathing, and it doubles as a face mask in a pinch. 
  • Moisture wicking socks.
  • Reflective, moisture wicking gloves.
  • Sunglasses and SPF: light reflecting off of snow, or through an overcast sky, can still cause eye strain and skin damage. Be sure to protect yourself if you’ll be exercising during the daytime, when light can be the most harsh.


  • Don’t bundle up.
  • Build warmth and protection in thin layers.
  • Keep your face–particularly your nose and mouth–protected.
  • Wear your Intake Band!