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Don't Put Your Training On Ice When The Mercury Drops

Posted May 25 2010 1:15am

There is no more denying it – the cold weather has definitely set in! With only a week left until Winter, many of you may be needing a little extra motivation to keep up your workouts and stay on track towards your goals.

While it can be tempting to shelve your exercise routine along with your summer wardrobe, it’s really important to maintain your training, as once the exercise habit is broken it can be difficult to re-establish. With Sydney’s temperate climate that we are lucky enough to enjoy, there are no excuses for skipping exercise and flopping on the couch because it’s “too cold!” Remember, it’s not cold in the gym!

Here are a few things to keep in mind when the cold weather sees your motivation waning.
  • Training in the cold = heightened fat burning
  • Even though Winter is a time that most of us associate with stacking the kilos on, it actually provides the perfect environment for fat metabolism. Colder times of the year are a great time to lose weight and improve body composition, thanks to an increased resting metabolic rate. You can maximise this with plenty of cardio, and continuing to build your muscle mass.
  • How good will you feel when Spring comes and you have not only kept the extra weight off, but edged even closer to achieving the body you want? Why not make this the year that you avoid the weight loss panic we are all prone to once the weather gets warmer!
Cure the winter blues with exercise
We have all experienced the mild melancholy that can set in when the days get shorter and the temperature drops. Regular exercise is a fabulous cure for this, as it boosts energy that can be thieved by gloomy weather. Sticking to your workout schedule is also the ultimate self-esteem booster and will definitely lift your spirits.
Keep up your cardio when you’d rather not head outdoors

If you normally boost your training sessions at the gym with outdoor runs, walks or cycles, the colder weather, shorter days and rain might make indoor training preferable. At New Image, we are now offering unlimited extra cardio packs. This allows clients to book in on the days when they don’t have PT sessions for extra cardio, and can really help to keep them moving when the outdoor elements are unfavourable!

Dos and don’ts for braving the winter outdoors
  • Dress in layers so you can peel them off when you start to sweat and pop them back on when you feel cold again. It’s a big mistake to dress too warmly, as cold weather does not switch off the sweat process and exercise generates a large amount of heat.
  • If you’re an outdoor runner, rotate at least two pairs of running shoes. Winter’s damp conditions can leave your shoes’ midsoles saturated with moisture. As wet midsoles don’t absorb shock as well as dry soles, it’s a good idea to leave water-logged shoes to dry out for 48 hours and use your second pair for the next day’s run.
  • It is more important than ever to make sure that you include your warm up and cool down and to do some stretching while your body is still warm. This is key to preventing injuries and stiffness.
  • Winter is a great time of the year to reward tired muscles with a rejuvenating massage.
  • When the sun pops out, get outside! Even if it’s just for a jaunt around the block with the dog, stretching your legs and stealing some sunshine is guaranteed to lift your spirits and energise you.
  • Just get out there and do it!
  • Reduce your fluid consumption. Sweating rates are lower in the cold than in the heat, but cold weather can still be dehydrating. Water is lost from the respiratory tract at a higher rate on chilly days, and exposure to cold air can also increase urine production. Feelings of thirst are also diminished in cold air, which further exacerbates dehydration.
  • Skip the sunscreen, even when it’s cold and overcast.
  • Break your workout routine just because it’s cold outside. You will never regret powering through a workout, even when you don’t feel like it.
Sean L’Estrange - New Image Personal Conditioning

(You can find information about Sean under our Fitness Nuts Section so go in and take a look at who is providing this great advice and while you're there why not book in a session with Sean... I can tell you first hand that the studio is fantastic!)
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