The ABCs of winter clothing

The ABCs of winter clothing
The ABCs of winter clothing

To train in winter without being too cold or too hot, our clothing must insulate us from the cold, be waterproof and breathe to allow perspiration to escape.


The Stockings

For dry feet, avoid the traditional white cotton socks that retain moisture. Wool and synthetic fibers are a happy blend of warmth, comfort and efficiency. For even more comfort, look for additional ‹‹cushioning ›› in the heels and toes.

Don't be afraid to invest in quality, flexible stockings: they will last longer and save you a lot of foot pain.


A shoe must combine the following qualities:

  • foot support, flexibility and lightness, good sole (shock absorption and grip on the ground), waterproofing and "breathable" (wicking away perspiration).
  • A larger size will allow you to wear one or two pairs of stockings without immobilizing the toes. Remember that poor blood circulation linked to congested feet in a shoe that is too small promotes the cold.

Lower body

Underwearsuitable for the temperature and waterproof breathable pants over it. If someone has knee weakness, I strongly suggest that they keep the joint warm with a bandage, for example.

Upper body

  • The ideal is to use several layers of clothing that you can remove or add as needed.
  • An undergarment that in contact with the skin will regulate perspiration (eg polypropylene, Spandex-lycra, etc.).
  • Next, a fleece type garment for insulation against the cold. We cover everything with a garment whose fabric offers protection against the wind and is waterproof while being breathable. Goretex is a great choice, but more expensive.
  • Beyond three layers, choose sleeveless clothing to maintain good arm mobility.

Note that…

  • A hood with visor better protects the face.
  • Underarm zippers allow better control of body heat.
  • Coats with longer cuts provide better protection, but limit leg movement.
  • Welded seams seal the garment well.


You lose a lot of heat through your head. Don't forget to cover it well, especially on the forehead and earlobes. In very cold weather, protect your face (nose and cheeks) with a scarf or balaclava. Note that since the metal transmits the cold, it is better to avoid loopsearrings.



Put on two layers to have the option of removing a peel without exposing the skin to the cold. A pair of synthetic fiber or woolen gloves and a good pair of warm ski gloves or mittens on top.

Note that:

  • The extremities, head, ears, face, hands and feet are often the first victims of the cold.
  • To promote blood circulation, opt for wider shoes and gloves.
  • To control body heat, wear several layers of clothing that you can add or remove as needed.
  • Synthetic fibers, such as polypropylene, fleece, and polyester, are highly recommended as they wick away moisture quickly.
  • Cotton should be avoided because it retains moisture.
  • In very cold weather or high winds, watch out for frostbite. Avoid leaving a patch of skin exposed. Protect neck, wrist and ankle openings.
  • In addition to a bottle of water, have handkerchiefs and lip balm handy.

Finally, each individual's metabolism is different. The ideal is to tame the climate by experimenting with different clothes at different times.

The evening or the morning, with or without sun, with or without wind, are all factors to consider and especially to acclimatize!

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