During colder weather, it may be tempting to stay indoors and skip your run or daily exercise.
However, exercising in the winter months is just as important as all year round to remain active and keep your joints mobile. Joint stiffness is more prominent in colder months and keeping up your exercise routine can help to maintain your joint health all year round.
We share some things to consider when exercising in winter:
If you’re exercising outdoors in the winter months, make sure you have the correct kit for the cold weather. Be sure to wear layers that can be removed as you warm up and also a high visibility vest or jacket if you are running at night. If possible when running at night, stay to well-lit areas and pathways, or run with a group.
Winter workouts can be especially slippery when it’s wet of icy outside. If this is the case, you should try to stick to salted or dry surfaces when exercising. Your trainers or boots should be waterproof to protect your socks and feet from becoming wet. If you’re working out in icy conditions, shoes with snow spikes will help to increase traction and reduce any risk of injury.
Protect your skin
To help prevent your skin from drying out during winter months, drink plenty of water and use moisturising cream or lotion before and after exercise outdoors. To help block out biting winds, you could keep your face covered with a running mask or scarf.
Remember to warm up
It’s especially important to warm up before workouts in cold weather. Warming up before you exercise will help to increase blood flow and temperatures in the muscles to help reduce the risk of injury.
Even in colder weather, it’s still important to drink plenty of water, especially during exercise. You can still lose fluids through seat and breathing, so you need to replace those fluids.
Exercise with others
Working out with a friend or partner can help with motivation and make exercise more fun and sociable, especially in cold weather. If you don’t want to exercise outside you could sign up to a class, which can also help with motivation by harnessing the energy of the group.
Set yourself goals
To help keep you motivated to work out during colder months, set yourself a goal to achieve and give yourself something to work towards.
Remember why it’s important to stay active throughout winter months, even if it feels hard to do so. If you prefer outdoor exercise you could switch to indoor exercise to change up your routine and work your body in a different way than you usually would.
Keep up a healthy routine
Lack of energy can be a problem in winter months. As well as staying active, make sure you get plenty of sleep and keep up with a healthy diet plan throughout the year. The more organised you are, the easier it will be to stay active.
Being organised and prepared can help to stay motivated and active when it’s cold outside. Get your gym clothes ready the night before, pack a snack for a mid-afternoon boost or create a motivational playlist. Little steps such as these can all help to make workouts easier and reduce chances of skipping your workout.
Exercising in winter months may not fill you with much enthusiasm, but keeping active is a great way to maintain a healthy lifestyle and reduce the winter blues.