Reasons Winter is the Best Time to Start a Workout Routine
Workouts can be a pain for many and to start a workout routine in winter will sound a very bad idea. I remember when I was in school, we daily had a PT session during prayer assembly in winters. My teachers used to focus more on our morning exercise regime during winters. Now I understand, why? Those mass drills and fast-exercises were enough to warm us and raise our productivity against the laziness inducing winter. Undoubtedly, winter is the best time to start a workout routine. Workout in winter can prove to be more beneficial than workout during the rest days of the year.
Winter has arrived. It’s starting to get really cold outdoors. Cold weather brings illness and human hibernation. So it’s really important to stay focused on our health and fitness. In winter we tend to be lazy, eat more, sleep more, and work less which can build layers of fat around our body. Staying active with workout is essential not only for physical health but also for our mental health.
There are many scientific reasons why winter is the best time to start a workout routine. Your risk of heatstroke decreases in winter. Workout improves blood circulation, lowers high blood pressure, and reduces stress as well. It helps burn more calories in the winter and also prevents infections and illnesses.
Below are the top 5 reasons why winter is considered the best time to start a workout routine.
1. Healthy winter sunshine
Sun is the natural source of vitamin D. When your bare skin is exposed to the sunlight, it causes a reaction in the body that promotes the production of vitamin D. Unlike other vital vitamins found in food, Vitamin D is produced in the skin, with sun exposure. Vitamin D is required to build strong bones, overcome inflammation, and to keep your immune system strong. Moreover, it helps to prevent high blood pressure, diabetes, and a number of cancers. During the summer 10 minutes of sun exposure is enough, but in winter, sunshine is in short supply and we spend less time outdoors. So, it can affect the formation of Vitamin D naturally in the body. Also, the winter sunshine is an ideal supplement vitamin D. So it’s very important to get outside for a light jogging or a morning walk to get moving under the sun.
2. Warm your body naturally and keep yourself energetic for hours
According to various studies, bringing yourself to workout give you more energy in the long run. At first, your system will obviously get a shock with the cold waves, but it is the best way to warm yourself, so keep exercising. It will also provide the required warmth to your body. A workout is the best way to increase your heart rate and get your blood pumping in a natural way in winter. Hence, instead of soaking your feet in a footbath or seating in front of a heater, opt for an easy workout routine because it raises your body temperature which has a very calm and soothing effect on your mood and body. Also, the winter season gives you a chance to revive your workout routine with the best deals and offers on a gym membership.
3. You sweat less in winter
It may be hard to notice but your body produces sweat in winter too. Many people avoid workouts to stay sweat-free. Sweating is a necessary process for your body to cool itself naturally. The reason you sweat less in winter is that it evaporates rapidly in cold air. Because of the cold weather, you won’t feel that sweaty while exercising like you normally would feel in the hot weather. Few minutes of your workout are actually worthy to keep you warm and energetic in the cold atmosphere without that sweaty feeling.
4. You burn more fat and calories
Scientifically, your body uses a significant amount of energy to warm and humidify the air, you inhale when you workout in winter. Regular workout routine in cold climate demands more energy for your body to raise its internal heat. That means you will have to provide your body with pre-workout warmups first, before starting your actual workout routine. You will need to work harder to achieve a stable body temperature which in turn will help you burn more calories.
5. Keeps you healthy
Winter workouts also boost your mental health. Studies prove that vitamin D has an anti-depressant effect which elevates your moods, reduces anxiety and depression, helps you when you are feeling low, making you feel more serene and stress-free. In addition exercising releases endorphins, which minimize the pain of exercising, reduce inflammation, leaving you to feel good and happy. Moreover, regular workouts strengthen your immune system and guard you against viral infections, cold, and flu. While exercising, your blood flow also boosts the immune cells and circulates them faster through your body helping them identify infections and destroy them. However, this boosts only lasts longer in the effect of regular workouts in winter.
Dos and Don’ts
Deep breathing contracts the diaphragm and expands the lungs, helping to penetrate oxygen to the body cells and further utilize it as a catalyst for cell metabolism. In other words, deep breathing gives your lungs an opportunity to detox.
Find the motivation to exercise in winter
Put on your active winter wear, they are wind-resistant and water-resistant especially designed for the climate and weather. Write down about your exercises and make a plan for new exercises to avoid a lack of exercise. Join a group workout to motivate yourself. Find a workout friend and learn a new sport or skill.
Our body muscles need gradual warm-ups with speed walking, quads, light stretching, jumping, to heat up the larger muscles before workouts. This will limit possible injuries.
Even though you sweat less in winter, don’t forget to stay hydrated by drinking adequate water or warm non-caffeinated drink before, during, and after your workout.
There’re two kinds of harmful sun rays that reach us, namely Longwave ultraviolet A (UVA) and short wave ultraviolet B (UVB). The long wave ultraviolet A rays penetrate inward the corium or dermis, while shortwave ultraviolet B rays will usually burn the external layers of your skin. UVB rays are hazardous in the winter, so there are chances you may get sunburn easily. Also, UVA rays cause wrinkles and premature aging which damages your skin. Always put your sunscreen lotion in your gym bags. Do not skip your sunscreen protection during winter sunshine hours.
Winter is also an ideal time for various indoor activities, dance, yoga, games, and swimming. 30 to 45 minutes of workout in the day could indeed change your whole concept in winter. So, instead of being a hibernating person, get up, stay motivated, find a companion to encourage you, and stay healthy and fit in this winter mornings.