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Discussion: cold

in: Samantha; Samantha > 2016-01-14

Jan 14, 2016 1:13 PM # 
That's -17! Melissa has learned that she can't exercise when it's that cold but your airways are probably a little more used to that kind of stress. And anyway, collapsing in the cold will toughen you up.
Jan 14, 2016 2:22 PM # 
-17 is chilly. Be careful. bundle up, breathe through a buff to protect your lungs.
Jan 14, 2016 2:26 PM # 
I figure that most of the battle for me at the moment is just getting my butt out the door. So even if I go and can't work quite as hard, at least I went. Just hoping I'm not the only one! And i strongly dislike breathing through a buff because of how wet, and then how frozen it gets.
Jan 14, 2016 2:29 PM # 
Yeah, I'm with you on the buff. Your lungs don't really need protecting, so it's really about comfort. If you get "runner's cough" from breathing the cold air then maybe it's better with a buff. But you won't damage your lungs by not using one.
Jan 14, 2016 2:37 PM # 
That's good to know. And I'm not usually bothered by cold air (as long as I'm not sick).
Jan 14, 2016 5:09 PM # 
Cristina, do you have something to back that up? Everything I've read shows that cold air really does damage your lungs. I'd love it if that weren't true, but long-term damage is the reason a lot of skiers use those stupid-looking face masks. That's the reasoning FIS gives for cold-weather race cancellations. Is it wrong? or is it only people already at risk for exercise-induced-asthma who are going to be in trouble?
Jan 14, 2016 5:54 PM # 
I looked into a bunch when we moved to Norway and the consensus appeared to be that you're not going to hurt yourself breathing in cold air because your body warms it up before it gets very far. It can still hurt, and be uncomfortable, and make you cough because it's really dry air and maybe stuff is constricting with the cold. But the lungs should survive ok. There's lots of stuff like this (from

"Many runners fear that in very cold temperatures their lungs or airway tissues can freeze and cause damage. Some runners experience pain or stinging in their lungs when exercising in the cold.

Fortunately this is one concern that is largely unfounded. Your body is incredibly efficient in heating air before it makes it to your lungs so the risk of sub-freezing air killing tissue or freezing your lungs is not a concern. But some do struggle with breathing in cold weather.

Much of the time this is due to dry air being inhaled rather than cold air. You might try inhaling through your nose as much as possible or purchasing a running mask to help warm and moisten the air before you inhale it."
Jan 14, 2016 5:55 PM # 
A handful of years ago, my mom sent me a pdf of this article which shows that cold air (-5C) during exercise (15 minutes) was able to change the cytokine profile in the lung fluid. So maybe exercising in the cold would lead to a change in the rate of getting sick. Seems like the risk might be for developing an exercise-induced-asthma but basically your lungs never get exposed to the colder air, as the stuff that gets that far down the airway is pretty warm already. It may be a semantic distinction to say that sensitivity to cold air is not necessarily lung damage.

Found one more metastudy
Jan 14, 2016 6:25 PM # 
The conclusion bit is interesting:

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Exposure of intrapulmonary airways to cold air alters immunologic responses of horses for at least 48 hours. The increased expression of cytokines that suppress cell-mediated immunity may predispose athletes to viral infections of the respiratory tract following exercise in cold weather.

Does this mean our mothers were right all along?
Jan 14, 2016 6:36 PM # 
It means be careful when you exercise your horse when it's cold out. We have run and skied for many years at temps much lower than -5° C. In F°, running in single digits and skiing well below 0°. The references I have seen are more along the line of Cristina's reference than the horse one.
Jan 14, 2016 8:04 PM # 
It is good to be careful how far you take a study's findings. Sure this is in horses, but is there really any reason to think that humans would not have the same reaction to cold air?

We are constantly exposed to viruses, our immune systems are pretty good at fighting them off... this is just one tiny factor more to bring into the equation :)

My mother pretty much encouraged us to go outside and go skiing... I guess that means she did the calculation and decided that the benefits of going outside outweighed the risks of cold exposure :)
Jan 14, 2016 8:25 PM # 
Cat T:
this is interesting! good to know we wont all be at risk from some kind of "lung ice burn" at least :-) for me tonight though, being inside on the treadmill seemed like a good option because by the time i'm wearing enough clothes to keep warm, im a lot heavier, less flexible and have problems getting a good speed and running stride, so the workout feels more effective indoors. and to avoid any extra hanging about in the cold, which always feels more draining than doing the exercise in the low temperatures. skiing this morning felt like quite enough for one day! but nice one Sam for getting out there :-D see you for snowy adventure on Saturday!
Jan 14, 2016 8:46 PM # 
Ross - perhaps this could be an interesting side study for your mice, to get an expanded range of species samples.
Jan 15, 2016 9:56 AM # 
Mice on their little wheels, inside a freezer of some sort?
Jan 15, 2016 11:50 AM # 
If only I lived in a place with an ample supply of cold weather :)

by the way, am I the only one that sees Sam's log with a weird formatting issue recently? All the the threads and widgets that are normally off to the right of her log are now located below instead... it's only her log and only when I'm logged in as me, as far as I can tell.
Jan 15, 2016 11:56 AM # 
It's not just you, Ross. Let's start a support group.
Jan 15, 2016 2:00 PM # 
Same for me. Maybe because of the picture? I want to be in your support group!
Jan 15, 2016 2:02 PM # 
This is going to be the best support group ever.
Jan 15, 2016 2:03 PM # 
For sure! first meeting at my place!
Jan 15, 2016 2:56 PM # 
Likewise; it bothered me enough that I glanced through the source to look for a dangling tag or a gratuitous div, but I didn't see anything. It's not like Sam throws around div tags in any case. No doubt we could summon Kenny to resolve the problem in a few moments, but perhaps it is best that we test our OCD resolve with the atypical formatting.

Haha trolling/proof of concept of open HTML tag:
Jan 15, 2016 3:10 PM # 
It's weird because if I log in as Samantha, the formatting is correct. Maybe it's a combination of the image and also that her default language is in Swedish? Well, maybe not, as when my log is in Swedish, hers is still different.

Will control the CDO for a little while longer at least :)
Jan 15, 2016 4:24 PM # 
I'm sure it's the picture, since that's when it started, but it looks perfectly normal to me!
Jan 15, 2016 5:39 PM # 
Jan 17, 2016 9:45 AM # 
Did my log go back to normal? (Ian, close your tags! :))
Jan 17, 2016 5:40 PM # 
Yep! And :)

I was trying to think about what might be different in your log vs the public view; did you have any html content in a private note? Sorry that you are sick; perhaps this is a good time to brush up on your ticket to ride.
Jan 17, 2016 5:54 PM # 
Nope, nothing in a private note.
Jan 20, 2016 2:34 PM # 
Back to the topic. Steve Dentino did damage his lungs in a ski race many years ago, dry air, cold air? As Cat said, doing a fast hard workout in air that cold is not as effective, plus the risk of infection, strained muscles and slippy stuff.
Go hard inside or wait fro warmer weather (unless you are a skier I guess).
Feb 2, 2016 3:05 PM # 
Beating a dead horse...

This article just came out on Fasterskier - the interesting part isn't where Russia accuses Norway of doping (I mean, the Norwegians ARE winning everything), but where the British doctors are calling asthma and airway dysfunction an occupational hazard of cold-weather athletes. Doesn't say anything about developing airway problems later in life, so presumably if you haven't had those problems as a teenager and been diagnosed then, you're not super at risk later in life. And, inhalers work, and are legal. That's sort of the gist.
Feb 3, 2016 5:31 AM # 
I've run into the same issue with my log as mentioned earlier in the thread ("All the the threads and widgets that are normally off to the right of her log are now located below instead"). What, if anything, got done to fix it?
Feb 3, 2016 2:39 PM # 
I think it was something I did in the code of the picture (although no one knew what it was). Once the picture was gone, it was fixed
Feb 5, 2016 6:36 AM # 
I don't have any pictures but do have an HTML link, so will see if it's still like that when the link disappears out of the latest 7 days.

This discussion thread is closed.