This year I've become interested in the body's ability to adapt to cold weather. Growing up in the Southeast cold weather is typically short lived and not something that we had to deal with for long. But after this weekend I was curious as to how people handle outside activities when temperatures drop into single digits.
After some research I discover an article that starts with the statement:
"Humans are essentially tropical animals and are not equipped to deal with even mild cold. That we can live in cold climates is a result of behavioural adaptations such as wearing appropriate clothing and building shelters." (read more)
I have always believed that people were not designed to live in cold climates. But how can I adapt and continue my training and enjoyment of the outdoors?
One thing I try to do to adapt is not to wear heavy coats when I'm doing short term activities in the cold; taking out the garbage, feeding the birds, getting the mail. I'm trying to adapt to the cold so the more prolong activities (more than a hour or two) with the proper clothing don't seem so harsh. I have noticed that after long exposure to the cold I am much more fatigued that normal.
I can't imagine dealing with more than a few weeks of cold and a few days of really cold weather and tip my skull cap to people that live north of the Mason-Dixon line.