Push it! 6 ways to get your fitness fix in winter
Brrrrr…. It’s cold out there! Winter is firmly here and the sunshine and warm weather feels like a distant memory. My motivation to keep running, just like the birds, goes south in winter and I find getting out of bed in the morning challenging enough, let alone doing any exercise!
If you’re like me, and struggling to get enough exercise through the winter months, why not stick on a good playlist and give one of these indoor alternatives a go?
Pump up the jam
Warm up with a workout at home! Many popular fitness classes have an at-home alternative, such as Les Mills on demand, Barrecore and FIIT. For a free fix, why not check out fitness blender? Run by a husband and wife team who are both personal trainers, there’s over 500 free workout videos to try, from HIIT to Yoga.
With a little help from my friends
Why not arrange a get together with your friends and get active together? If you usually head out to the park for a kick about, maybe change it up for a game of basketball or a badminton match.
If you’re more of a solo exercise enthusiast you could switch your road bike for an indoor one and give a spin class a go. Or, if you’re feeling really adventurous, why not try indoor climbing so you can get an adrenaline rush as well as that all important endorphin hit!
Cold as ice
The winter months are a perfect time to perfect your skiing or ice-skating skills. Ice skating can burn as much as 600 calories an hour and it’s a great social activity too! If you’ve always wanted to try your hand at winter sports, now is as good a time as any to book in those lessons you’ve been meaning to do.
Don’t have the time or the budget for ski lessons? Head to the gym and recreate your own ski inspired workout using machines such as the skiErg for a low impact, high intensity full body workout.
Jumping in the pool might be the last thing you feel like doing in the winter, but studies have shown that cold water swimming increases your tolerance to the cold, boosts your immunity, enhances your blood circulation and can relieve aches and pains. Just make sure you’re well prepared and take lots of warm clothes to wrap up in after. The Outdoor Swimming Society has some great tips on staying safe if you’re new to cold water swimming.
Not quite ready to try out your local outdoor pool? Head inside instead! Swimming, whether it’s cold water or in a heated pool is a great workout as it exercises every muscle in your body and is low impact, so there’s no extra pressure on your joints.
For an alternative fitness fix, why not give rebound training a go? A study completed by NASA showed that rebound training on a mini trampoline was 68% more effective than jogging and required less effort – win, win!
This low impact, high-energy workout is a great way to bust stress, strengthen your bones and muscles, all while jumping around to your favourite songs. Not sure where to start? Boogie Bounce has classes up and down the country and welcomes people of all ages.
If it’s not icy, get outside anyway! Exercising outdoors gives your body exposure to natural light which can help keep the winter blues away and top up your vitamin D levels.
Remember, if you’re exercising outdoors, it’s important you’re well prepared and dressed appropriately for the weather. Think of a few light, sweat wicking layers that you can easily remove if you become hot and don’t forget your hat!
If you’re really struggling to get outside in the winter, think about setting yourself a goal – maybe you want to train for a race in the spring? Or maybe treat yourself to a reward after your outdoor workouts, like a nice warm bath or book yourself in for a recovery massage.
Whilst finding the motivation to exercise in the winter months can be hard, having alternatives can be the key to keeping yourself going in the darkest months of the year.
What are you going to try out this winter? Let us know in the comments below!
If you’re making pancakes tomorrow, why not mix things up. Whether you want to pack in some protein or just opt for a healthier option, here are 4 of our favourites:
- Whole-wheat blueberry pancakes
- Avocado pancakes
- Banana oatmeal pancakes
- Peanut butter protein pancakes