Does Running In The Cold Burn More Calories

Have you ever wondered if running in the cold can help you burn more calories? As a avid runner myself, I have always been curious about the impact of cold weather on calorie burn during a run. In this article, I will delve into the subject and share my personal experiences and insights.

Effects of Cold Weather on Calorie Burn

When you run in cold weather, your body has to work harder to stay warm. This means that your metabolism increases in order to generate heat and keep your body temperature stable. As a result, you burn more calories during a run in cold weather compared to running in warmer conditions.

One reason for the increased calorie burn in cold weather is the body’s natural response to temperature change. When you are exposed to cold temperatures, your body activates brown fat, which is a type of fat that helps generate heat. Brown fat burns calories to produce heat and keep your body warm, so running in the cold can actually stimulate the activity of brown fat, leading to an increase in calorie burn.

Personal Experience

During the winter months, I often find myself bundling up and hitting the pavement for a run. Not only does running in the cold provide a refreshing change of scenery, but I also notice that I feel more energized and burn more calories compared to running in the summer heat.

One thing I’ve noticed is that I tend to sweat less during cold weather runs. This may be due to the fact that my body is working harder to stay warm and maintain its core temperature, instead of sweating to cool down. Despite sweating less, I still feel like I’ve had a great workout and my muscles feel challenged.

Additionally, running in the cold requires more energy expenditure from my body. The cold air feels invigorating, and my breathing becomes more intense as my body works to warm the air I inhale. This increased effort translates into burning more calories and ultimately helps me maintain my fitness goals.

Considerations and Safety Tips

While running in the cold can be an effective way to boost calorie burn, it’s important to take certain precautions to ensure your safety and well-being.

First and foremost, make sure to dress appropriately for the weather. Layering your clothing can help regulate your body temperature and keep you comfortable throughout your run. It’s also important to protect your extremities, such as wearing gloves and a hat to prevent heat loss from your hands and head.

Another crucial aspect is staying hydrated, even though you may not feel as thirsty in colder temperatures. Dehydration can still occur during winter runs, so be sure to drink plenty of water before and after your workout.


So, does running in the cold burn more calories? Based on my personal experience and the science behind it, the answer is yes. The cold weather stimulates your body to work harder to generate heat, leading to an increase in calorie burn. However, it’s important to listen to your body and take necessary precautions to stay safe and comfortable during cold weather runs. So, if you’re looking to add some extra calorie burn to your runs, embrace the colder temperatures and go for a jog!