Winter Warm Up to Workout

Read this article to smash the winter blues down with workouts. Prepare well for exercising in winters and stay health all year long.

In some ways, winter can offer benefits which no other season can. For example, cold weather can actually improve endurance. Studies have shown that exercising in cold weather can transform white fat, specifically, belly and thigh fat into calorie burning brown fat.

On top of this, exercising in winters helps you get exposure to sunlight, which may help ward off seasonal affective disorder, a type of depression that some people experience during winter season. While cold weather exercise is safe for most of the people, if you have certain health conditions such as asthma or heart problems, check with you doctor for taking any special precautions based on your condition and medications.

Warming up to cold

Cold muscles are at a greater risk for injuries and strains. Make sure to warm-up pretty well before starting off with your cold weather workout. Here is a pre-workout routine you can try:

  1. Arm circles: Hold your arms out to the sides, palms down and shoulder height. Begin making small circles and keep making them larger as you complete 20 reps. Then go from large to small circles as you complete 20 circles once again.
  1. Arm swings: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Swing your arms in unison with the right and then to the left, twisting from the waist. Go back and forth until you complete 10 swings in total (five towards each side).
  1. High steps: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Raise your right knee high toward your chest (touch a wall for balance or place one or both your hands around your knee, if needed). Hold for a second and then come back to the starting position. Repeat the movement with your left knee. Go back and forth until you have lifted both your knees at least 10 times.
  1. Lunges: Stand with your feet together and step forward with your right leg, lowering your body by bending both knees to 90 degree angles. Return to the starting position and repeat the same movement with the left leg forward. Repeat the sequence for at least 10 times.

Get outside

As you prepare for summer heat and humidity, you have to take proper precautions and be prepared for winter weather as well. Here are some tips to stay safe during winter workouts:

  1. Wear layers: Dress in clothing which you can easily take off and put back on as needed. Start with a thin layer of synthetic material such as polypropylene, which draws sweat away from your body. Next, add a layer of fleece or wool for insulation. (Avoid cotton which absorbs sweat and can make you colder)Top this up with a water-proof layer. You also have to dress according to your exercise intensity, which you can experiment with.
  1. Protect your head, hands and feet: When it is cold, blood flow concentrates in your body’s core to help keep you warm, which leaves your head, hands and feet vulnerable to the cold. Wear gloves lined with wool or fleece. Also, wear a cap and warm socks. If outside, protect your eyes from cold wind, covering them with dark glasses.
  1. Apply sunscreen: It may not feel hot, but you may still get a sunburn in winters. Your risk increases if you are surrounded by snow which reflects sunlight. Always wear a product that blocks both types of ultra violet rays – UVA and UVB, at least 30 SPF and a lip balm with sunscreen.
  1. Stay hydrated: You are more likely to get dehydrated in winters because cold weather tamps down thirst. While you may not need the same fluid intake as in summers but small amount of fluid or water at short intervals does its job, especially, if you are exercising.

Winter workouts keep you warmer whole day and your chances to laze around are minimum. This increases your metabolism. Good, warm and nutritious food adds to the benefit of winter workouts. Exercise in winters helps you prepare a body to flaunt in summers and rewards you with year round good health. So gear up and get going. Happy Winters!

About The Author

Rajul Tiwari

Rajul Tiwari is the Editor-in-Chief at bodyandstrenth.com and has 18 years of experience in media, content, publishing and education. She has worked with media houses like Daini.... Read More..

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