When the weather is hot and the days are longer, people walk around full of energy. Back in Brazil, my home country, where summer collides with the holiday season (and the resolutions), gyms are over packed with people wanting to get in shape to show off at the beach. Motivation and inspiration is everywhere.
In the winter however, things get much, much different. In Belgium, where I live, the weather is windy, rainy or snowy (sometimes all of them together on the same day). It is cold and quite humid which lowers the thermal sensation even more. Everyone walks around with layers and layers of clothing showing as little as their nose in order to keep themselves warm.
In such situations the will for maintaining oneself in shape is deeply tested. How to keep on making it happen when there are so many adversities around you? What to do to maintain a healthy routine in spite of the challenges and lack of inspiration?
Well here are my 3 tips on how to go through the winter fit:
The supplements that I take throughout the year remain mostly the same with the exception of Vitamin D. When the sun shines less, or I simply cannot get much of it, I double my intake.
The importance of Vitamin D has been widespread the past years. Not only it helps regulates the amount of calcium in the body, but its lack has also been linked to lack of energy, some types of cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure and mood disorders, just to name a few. Since it is produced in skin stimulated by sunlight, one might need to take supplementation with when days are shorter and darker.
Have in mind though that no medication should be taken without medical evaluation. But the next time you have your blood checked, ask about your levels of Vitamin D. It may give you that boost you miss to keep on going.
Workout from home
We see a lot of “no pain, no gain” memes everywhere on the internet. But let’s be realistic: if there is snow covering your car, or at least enough to make the commute to the gym or the jogging outside unsafe, why then? Many companies even advise their employees to stay at home for safety, why should you risk yourself for a workout?
While at home, no matter how much free space you have, you can still get your training session done. Whether you have some toys (that is how I like to call my gym equipment) or not, you still can build a circuit routine (check my suggestion below) that will keep the blood flowing, burn some extra calories and guarantee that you get your daily workout.
Make sure you dedicate extra attention to the warm-up, your form and the cooldown when training your own. Preparing your muscles correctly for the activity will surely avoid injuries. For the same reason, slowing down afterwards should not be underestimated either. Include only exercises you are familiar with and are confident in how to perform for your own safety.
It is not because it is cold that you should neglect your fluids intake.
In the summer, because of the higher temperatures, we get thirsty faster than in the winter. Note however that thirst is not the best indicator to when (and how much) we should drink. Our body consists mainly of water that needs to be replaced on a frequently basis in order to keep it functioning.
Make sure you are getting enough hydration also under lower temperatures. Water is very important in maintaining body temperature and blood pressure levels all year round.
I did not include things such warmer outfits and extra protection because it is almost impossible to forget them. In addition, they vary a lot depending on what kind of temperature you experience where you live.
What are other your tips to go through winter fit?
Stay in shape!
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