It may be getting cold outside, but don’t let that discourage you from exercising outdoors! If you want to beat the negative effects of the dark, gloomy and long nights, embrace the change in weather and get outside for some winter exercise.
Did you know that exercising in lower temperatures is known to be more advantageous than working out in the heat of the summer? In fact, according to an article by Harvard Medical School, working out in the cold improves endurance and allows you to exercise efficiently. By running, jogging or walking in lower temperatures, you give your body the chance to strengthen its immunity as well as get some sun exposure in a time when we’re usually locked away inside.
So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the best ways to exercise this winter!
Exercise with others
It’s easy to be demotivated in the winter, so having someone by your side can make a big difference. Find a friend, run with your partner or get the workmates involved next time you go for a run. If someone is waiting for you or reminding you to join them, it’s harder to convince yourself to skip a session. Not only will having another person support you, but the conversations you have with them whilst exercising will keep you focused as you battle your way through the cold weather!
Variety is Key For Effective Winter Exercise
According to Geoff Walcott, ‘Variety is the key to enjoying exercise.’ Doing the same thing over and over again can make your workout routine monotonous, resulting in a decreased level of interest. What’s more, without variety, you prevent yourself from being excited about your next session. When you do get outdoors for a run or a jog, it’s extremely important to stop every so often and try a range of exercises. Find a bench and do some press-ups. You could even take a brief pause and challenge yourself with some squats, lunges or V-sits.
Lunch Time Workout
Finding the right time of day can be a challenge in the winter. I mean, it’s dark when you leave for work and dark when you return. If you find the courage to run in the dark, that’s great! But for those looking for a quick daytime run, jog or walk, with a chance of some sun exposure, lunchtime can be a great time for a quick workout. For those looking for something gentle, take a brisk walk before or after eating your lunch. For a nice setting, choose a local park or take a long walk to the cafe where you’ll be having your lunch!
Go For a Swim
At times, you may just want to escape the cold and find some warmth by exercising indoors. And that’s totally fine. If you do find yourself in this position, skip the home workouts and jump in the pool. Not only is it great for a cardio workout, but swimming is also an effective choice of exercise for those looking to work out almost every part of their body.
Change Up Your Winter Exercise With Snow Workouts
Running in the snow can be a challenging way to exercise, but also a very fun way to experience the outdoors. What’s more, as the surface will not be as flat, running or even walking in the snow helps you build core strength effectively. You could make things even more interesting by choosing to ski instead of running, jogging or walking. For those looking to improve their cardiovascular health and perfect their coordination and balance, opt for nordic skiing. Whilst many look to Europe for ski destinations, there are great places closer to home. Whether it’s Glenshee, Cairngorm Mountain or Raise in Cumbria, the UK is replete with breathtaking ski resorts for those looking to take advantage of the snow.
Main Image Credit: Jenny Hill (Unsplash)