As the winter stretches on with dark days and longer nights, the cold temperatures can tempt us to go into natural hibernation. So how can we make sure we keep fit…
As the winter stretches on with dark days and longer nights, the cold temperatures can tempt us to go into natural hibernation. So how can we make sure we keep fit over the winter months, especially those of us training for a marathon, trying to shift the Christmas bulge or simply looking to maintain fitness? Christianne Wolff personal trainer for Nelson’s Arnicare and trainer to the stars has suggested some creative ideas to maximise our workouts.
1 Carefully timing and organising your workouts is going to be really important during the winter – if you leave it to fate it’s not going to happen regularly enough and eventually your hibernating instinct will take over. Look at your diary and organise times to work-out at least 3 times a week. Personally I prefer working out first thing as other priorities inevitably take over during the day. But whenever you chose, make a date and stick to it.
2 Plan an activity you enjoy – don’t suffer through winter training, plan something fun! Whether its indoor climbing, zumba, or even skiing- have some fun with your workouts.
3 Make sure at least one session is outside – if the only time you can do this is at the weekend then stick to it- your body needs it! Try an organised group session or ask a friend to train with you if you need the extra motivation.
4 Do some cardio – Running, cycling, walking outdoors or resistance work is essential for maintaining fitness throughout the winter. You can make use of the nature around you by using tree stumps for tricep dips, step ups and bunny jumps. Many parks now have outdoor circuit training areas with apparatus made from trees- this is your own playground, so go and play.
5 Hill Running – if the ground is too muddy for long distance running then hill running is a great intensive workout. Start at the bottom and run half way up the hill and walk back down slowly. Next sprint 3/4 way up and then walk down slowly. Run all the way up and walk down slowly. Repeat once and warm down with a 10 minute walk and a stretch. Great when the weather is bad as you will only be outside for 20 minutes or so.
6 Warm down – Make sure you stretch whilst your body is still warm- you can do this through moving stretches rather than static ones such as stretching your arms whilst you walk or lunge walking to stretch your groin. When you get back home, massaging your legs can also help. A product such as Nelsons arnicare Arnica Cooling Gel is a great one as it also contains grapefruit and menthol to cool hot legs down.
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