POTTSVILLE, Pa. — As the winter weather kept many people in Pottsville inside, there are some who went out into the cold.
Health experts from Lehigh Valley Health Network say their emergency rooms are more crowded during wintry weather.
“They don't realize the effects of the cold, and then they're doing an activity like snow shoveling or what have you that requires a lot of stress on their body. More so if they were doing it if it was in warmer weather,” explained Crys Zimmerman, LVHN Clinical Exercise Physiologist.
“Shoveling snow, if it's a light amount of snow, could actually the equivalent to running a 15-minute mile. If it's a heavier amount of snow, it would be equivalent to a 10-minute mile,” added Ashley Heffelfinger, LVHN Clinical Exercise Physiologist.
To decrease the stress colder temperatures can put on the heart, health experts recommend staying active while staying indoors.
Even if it doesn't seem like a workout, basic activities help keep the blood flowing.
“It could be as easy as if once you're done shoveling your driveway, you could walk to your mailbox and come back. It doesn't have to be a whole hour at a time or a full hour at a time,” Heffelfinger mentioned.
The Lehigh Valley Health Network also recommends drinking more water, even if you don't feel thirsty.
“People tend not to intake or hydrate with proper fluids. They tend not to drink as much water when it's cold out, and therefore, they come in here because they're dehydrated, because they're not drinking enough, or they don't feel thirsty in the cold weather. So hydration is important, just not boilo,” said Zimmerman.
These experts say staying active and hydrated helps lower your blood pressure and heart rate and also lowers your chances of taking a trip to the emergency room.
Check out severe weather tips on WNEP’s YouTube channel.