It’s sure getting colder outside but that’s no excuse not to exercise. Quite the opposite in fact. Maybe the knowledge that in order to warm up your body your metabolism speeds up in colder weather (and burns calories quicker) might tempt you outdoors?
There’s also a lot of fun exercises you can do with friends which aren’t available during the summer months such as ice skating, sledging, snowboarding and skiing (ok, maybe not quite yet but they will be in a month or so).
Another good part about fooling around with friends and having a laugh doing winter sports is that it doesn’t even feel like exercise but you’re still getting all the aerobic, toning and weight-loss benefits.
There are quite a few major differences though when exercising outdoors in colder winter months compared to the summer, which it’s well worth remembering and which we always point out to clients here at Overland Park Boot Camp:
Winter exercise preparation
- Layer up and make sure that the material closest to your skin is made from breathable material which will wipe away your perspiration. Otherwise your tee-shirt will remain damp and wet – not a great combination when you’re out in cold weather
- Do some jogging on the spot or other form of light exercise to get your circulation pumping round your body prior to going outdoors. This is because exercising straight off in the cold is more likely to lead to injury
- It’s still important to drink when exercising in the cold. It may not seem as necessary as in the warmer months but your body will perform better and re-hydrated if you keep sipping as usual
Winter could also prove an opportunity to give your body a break from your usual fitness routine. For instance, if you cycle outdoors a lot during the year you might want to try swimming or squash during the colder winter months as a break, before switching back again when the warmer weather comes around. It’ll not only give your body a bit of a rest and new muscles a try out, but mentally you might feel even more enthusiastic about restarting your favorite exercise activity. A lot of athletes adopt this type of alternating training schedule for the simple reason that it works.
It can be harder to motivate yourself to get outdoors in the colder weather so it’s always good to bargain with yourself as an incentive. Tell yourself you’ll stop your routine 15 minutes early for instance. Chances are you’ll be enjoying it so much – the endorphins will be flowing by then – that you’ll want to keep going anyway!
Do you have any winter motivation tips you want to share with us here at Overland Park Boot Camp?
Pic credit: Dave Di Biase