You may have made the most of the first UK lockdown, enjoying the sunshine, the light nights and warm mornings to get out there and exercise within the permitted rules and regulations.
It’s harder this time around: the nights are longer, the evenings dark and cold and, if you are going for a walk or a run, and it’s raining, windy or snowing even, then it’s harder to make those first steps out of the front door.
But once you are out then it’s easier – and just think how GOOD you will feel when you are done and back home!
Winter is when it can be too easy to give in and lose our regular exercise habits. It can be tough to find the will to get out in the morning or find the motivation to put on your exercise shoes when it’s dark and cold outside.
How do we find the will to keep exercising through the cold months?
Did you set yourself a goal at new year to get fitter, or be more active, but the cold weather and darker mornings and evenings are putting you off?
Here are our tips for keeping your routine and exercise going this winter: tips and hints we always tell our clients in the Paul Gough Physio Rooms!
Dress the part.
Make sure you have the right clothing. The “it’s too cold” excuse can often be a result of bad clothing choices. A winter exercise jacket, gloves, hat (dut as they say in Hartlepool!) and running tights will help keep the North-East wind at bay.
Find an exercise buddy.
Right now, you are allowed to meet up with one friend outside for this purpose. Find someone who will keep you company in the dark.
Warm up indoors BEFORE stepping out.
Get your body warm and your blood circulating before you head out the door. Dynamic stretches (leg swings) and warm up drills (jogging on the spot) will make it easier to handle to cold weather.
Set up an exercise calendar in your phone.
Mark down your exercise days so you have a visual reminder to get out there. Setting an achievable winter goal can help you stay on track – and think of how good it will be to be feeling good when you are running in the spring!
Change it up.
Sometimes we just get bored of doing the same exercise all the time. Run or walk different routes – you don’t ALWAYS have to do the same thing or the same route.
Exercise at home.
You can get a good workout at home by just using your body weight or any free weights you might have around the house. There are a lot of exercise programs online that need no equipment. Make sure you find the right one for you.
Keep yourself motivated by remembering why exercise is good for you!
Don’t forget – exercising when it’s cold can help increase your blood flow and burn more energy and fat stores as it takes more work to keep the body warm.
Remember to always warm up and cool down to avoid injury and to rest when you need to – NEVER over-exert yourself.
And remember: ENJOY IT!
If you’re in pain and would like to talk to us about getting some help, or if you have any questions please, click here to complete our enquiry form or CALL us on 01429 866771.
P.S. For more tips and advice, read Paul’s book The Healthy Habit – www.thehealthyhabitbook.com – It is essential reading to help maintain an independent and active life.