With asthma the basic problem is chronic inflammation along with tightening of the smooth muscles that surround the airways of the lungs. This inflammation is decreased and prevented when an inhaled steroid is used daily. Bronchospasm is the tightening of the smooth muscles that surround the airways of the lungs. A fast-acting inhaled bronchodilator medicine, like albuterol, reverses the bronchospasm quickly by relaxing the smooth muscles. It is most important that the inflammation and your asthma be under good control. If you need to use albuterol more than twice in a week this means that the inflammation and your asthma are not controlled. When a long-lasting inhaled bronchodilator medicine is used every day it prevents bronchospasm. This would have the added benefit of decreasing the need for the albuterol.
When this inflammation is not controlled, it increases the sensitivity of the airways to a variety of things that make asthma worse. These asthma triggers vary from person to person. Cold air is a common trigger. Using albuterol 10 to 15 minutes before going out into the cold will quickly open the airways of your lungs. This pre-treating should lessen and possibly prevent your cough and the drop in your peak flow while you are out in the cold.
If you are needing to take Albuterol after activites outdoors then you probably should pre-medicate with the Albuterol before you go outside.