Winter or cold weather is a time when most people feel could be a bad weather for workouts. But as the saying goes; “If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done.” There is actually nothing called bad weather for workout. You can try some of the best winter workouts and keep yourself fit and active even if it is cold. Read below and note them down.
6 Best Winter Workouts
It is probable that in winter or cold days you might have cold and it may compromise your energy levels, so you may not feel up for more intense physical fitness. However, even just a 20 minutes of walk in winter can help you reap the benefits of regular workout and it may also help you improve your cold symptoms too. Walking will stimulate you to take deep breaths and also can help you open up those passages, in case your sinuses are plugged up due to cold. However, it must be noted, in case you feel worse due to walking or any type of physical exertion, then better stop walking and get enough of rest instead.
If jogging is your part of regular workout routine, then do not skip it only because it is winter or cold outside. Many individuals who are runners, say that running and jogging helps them feel better when they are sick. However, in case you are experiencing flu-like symptoms in cold weather, then it is good to skip jogging and take rest.
You must be thinking to skip running in winter. Well! Let us inform you that running in cold weather is actually good for you. In fact, winter is the ideal condition for you to run. This is because, the colder the weather, the less heat stress on the body; and this makes it significantly easier to run. Running in hot or humid weather is extremely taxing on the body and that is why most of the Marathons are held during October and November. Moreover, running burns significant calories and is thus very much beneficial in maintaining and even losing weight during cold weather or winter seasons.
Running is also beneficial in preventing seasonal affective disorder or SAD. This is because running helps in releasing powerful hormones that help combat depression, increasing positive mood states during cold weather. Running will also help you keep your metabolism going strong during cold weather. So, do not let the winter or cold weather stop you from running. Lace up your sneakers, and get going.
A cross between martial arts and meditation is a slow and mindful movement known as Qi Gong. It is a low intensity workout that you can perform even during winter and it is known to be beneficial in reducing stress, anxiety, improve blood circulation and also increase energy. Some modern evidence suggests that Qi Gong has immunity-boosting powers and thus could be beneficial during cold weather.
Our body releases the stress hormone cortisol when it is fighting infections such as the common cold; and research says that stress-relieving techniques like yoga and breathing exercises may help in enhancing your immunity. Apart from this, gentle stretching may help relieve aches and pains that are related to colds and sinus infections, likely to happen more during winter.
In case, you are worried about overdoing it with vigorous sun salutations, then you must first choose a slower style of yoga practice, such as Hatha yoga. You can also try focusing on restorative postures like, Child’s pose and Leg up the wall, at home. It is always good to perform yoga asanas under the supervision of a yoga trainer.
Taking a Zumba or Cardio dance class, or simply rocking out to your favorite songs while you clean your house, can serve as a stress-reduction tool. In fact, as per a study, it was found that individuals who just listened to a 50 minutes of dance music, had less cortisol and more cold-fighting antibodies; a sure boost to their body’s immune systems. Being a low impact workout, dance classes can break a sweat without putting an excess of stress on your joints. You can go for the dance at your own pace, and also you can take it easy on days when you do not feel really well.
Winter Workout Clothes To Stay Warm & Safe During Workouts in Cold Weather
In case, you are going for outdoor workouts like running, jogging, walking, etc. during winter, then you must dress appropriately and also pay attention to some of the safety measures. Below are some of them.
Dress in three or more layers. Use a lightweight synthetic material so as to wick moisture away from your skin. Do not wear heavy cotton materials, as these absorb sweat, trapping wetness closer to your body, which can increase the risk of hypothermia. Add one more layer of wool or fleece for insulating warmth and then top it off with a lightweight, water-repellent and wind-resistant material.
- Always wear a hat and gloves and cover your face with a scarf during cold weather.
- Wear light or reflective clothing.
- Wear sturdy footwear that has good traction. This would prevent slips and falls on snow or ice during cold weather.
It must be noted, that a common mistake most people make is actually dressing too warmly while working out in cold weather. You must remember that your body would generate heat and sweat, even though it is cold outside. And, once your sweat begins to accumulate in your clothes, it can have a chilling impact. So, dress appropriately while you are exercising in cold weather.
NOTE: It is good to stay indoors and go for workouts inside if the temperature dips well below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, or in case the wind chill factor is too high. Drink plenty of fluids, as remaining hydrated properly is just as important during cold weather as during hot weather.
Remember, “It is only cold if you are standing still!” So, get up and give your body what it actually wants. Protect yourself from the cold, dress up properly, drink plenty of fluids and exercise safe. Try out these workouts and build your health and body. Tell to self; “Cold cannot stop me!”
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