3 benefits of hiking in the winter

4 benefits of hiking in the winter

Most casual adventures will hang up their boots at first snow. But, in reality, you should go out into nature because many of the best trails are empty during the winter. You will see views that can't be seen any other time of year. But, let's talk about how hiking in the winter benefits your body and mind! 

1. Winter hikes help you burn fat

 According to a study from the University at Albany in New York found people who hiked in temperatures of 15 to 23 degrees burned 34 percent more calories than those who hiked in comfortable mid-50s weather. Why was this the case? It comes down to body temperature in cold weather, your body burns extra energy just to keep your internal temperature stable. But the second factor is terrain. Trekking through the snow adds extra resistance.

2. You build muscles way quicker

 The American Journal of Human Biology observed that people during a three to a four-month outdoor training program in cold climates. Women increased their muscle mass, even while burning more calories than they consumed. The women were better able to manage the cold than men because they have more body fat and could use those fat stores to fuel the activity. That is, their bodies were less likely to break down muscle for fuel—allowing for the muscle gain as they lost six pounds of fat on average. 

3. The Trails boost your mood

Now most people go into nature to get away from the daily grind and calm their mind. But, it turns out this calming effect is super-charged in the winter. Snow reflects tremendous amounts of sunlight, so there may be no better way to bank some precious winter sunlight, which triggers your body's ability to produce mood-boosting vitamin D. Cold temperatures mean hiking trails are not only less peopled but also bug-free.


We hope to see you out on the trails this winter!