With at least a couple more months of cooler weather, get pumped for the tremendous benefits of exercising in winter:
Enjoy an Energy Boost
Darker, colder days can make you tired and lethargic. That doesn’t make a good combo when you’re thinking about exercising. But it doesn’t help motivate you to do anything else either – even things you love. Give yourself the energy you need to enjoy your life by moving your body and getting your blood flowing. Bonus Benefit: If you workout outdoors, you’ll get an even bigger energy jolt from the crisp air.
Shed Holiday Joy Weight
Many of us are feeling those few extra pounds we put on during the holidays. From Halloween to Valentine’s Day it seems you can’t escape the endless treat offerings. While it was fun putting them on, one of the fabulous benefits of exercising in winter is that you can drop those few pounds before spring. Bonus Benefit: Regular fitness will help you want to eat healthier and reduce food cravings.
Sure, it’s a bit chilly out. And maybe your house feels a bit frigid right now too. But the best way to naturally warm your body is through exercise. A brisk outdoor walk or simply stretching or lifting weights in the comfort of your home will warm your entire body without turning on the heat. Bonus Benefit: In cooler weather you won’t sweat as much and therefore not smell as bad after workouts.
Boost Your Immune System
Did you know exercise is a legitimate way to stay healthier? It’s still cold and flu season and you need your immune system to work hard to keep you well. Your defenses go up with regular, moderate exercise so take advantage of this huge health benefit. Bonus Benefit: Working out when it is cold makes your heart work harder to pump blood. With an established exercise routine you can improve cardiovascular strength to support better overall health.
Find New Ways to Workout
For those who hate exercising in the heat, outdoor winter workouts can be fantastic. For those who hate exercising in the cold, stay indoors but invigorate your routine by trying pilates, a new workout DVD or joining a gym. Bonus Benefit: Many gyms offer wintertime specials. Take advantage of them before spring hits and everyone is trying to get in shape.
Improve Your Mood
You probably know that exercise releases feel good hormones and neurotransmitters in your body. These are especially important in winter months when the blues are more likely to set in. Bonus Benefit: Exercising outdoors gives you a dose of Vitamin D that your body craves and can further elevate your mood.
Keep Joints Agile
Colder weather invites arthritis and other joint pain. Staying active will help you reduce flare-ups and loosen joints so you’re less likely to injure yourself. Bonus Benefit: Strengthening all areas of your body reduces chance of injury so you can stay active for longer.
Sources: Cosmopolitan, Huffington Post and The Body Camp