Does Running In The Cold Burn More Calories?

Does Running In The Cold Burn More Calories? EndurElite Chief Endurance Officer Matt Mosman discusses why this myth is total BS.

Four Fast Facts About Exercising In The Cold

  1. Exercising in the cold does not burn more calories than normal by increasing thermogenesis.
  2. That's because the body produces enough heat on its own when running or cycling in the cold. It does not need to produce more heat to stay warm.
  3. You will burn more calories in the cold if you are running through deep snow.
  4. You would also burn more calories if you started to shiver.

Full Video Transcription:

Good morning, Family of Fast. Matt Mosman, the Chief Endurance Officer over at EndurElite. You know what we haven't done for a while? We haven't busted the bullshit for a while. And on the chopping block today is this question,

Does running in the cold burn more calories?

And the short answer is hell to the no. Unless you're running in like 100 pounds snowmobile suit, army boots and going through a foot of snow. So let's discuss this bullshit theory and then we'll wrap it up with a nice little present and then we'll stump on it and obliterate that bullshit.

The Myth Behind Why It Was Once Thought More Calories Were Burned When Exercising In The Cold

So here's how the theory goes. When you're running in the cold your body needs to produce more heat to stay warm. This is a process known as thermogenesis. And thermogenesis will basically burn more calories because your body is producing more heat. Now, here's why it's total bullshit. And the answer is actually really, really simple.

Why You Don't Burn More Calories When Running In The Cold

When you're running and you're appropriately dressed in layers, your body is already producing enough heat where it doesn't need to have a huge spike in thermogenesis to keep warm. That's it. That's the simple part above it or about it. Excuse me.

Now, if you really wanna suffer miserably in the cold just to burn more calories, like the amount of Wrigley's chewing gum, you know, get in your underwear, go outside when it's like 20 below, start shivering because this will produce thermogenesis, and you might burn a few calories but it's actually a pretty stupid idea if you ask me. So bullshit busted. Running in the cold does not burn more calories because your body is already producing enough heat. It's kind of like a no-duh answer. So bullshit busted and that is all I have for today.

If you ask some friends that are trying to fill you with a bunch of malarkey about running in the cold burning more calories, please share this video with them. If you want other videos like this on Endur there's training, nutrition, supplementation. Busting the bullshit. Subscribe to the EndurElite YouTube channel or head on over to the EndurElite blog at Get social with us on Instagram and the Family of Fast Facebook page. And until next time, stay fueled, stay focused, stay fast, and stay informed.