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Winter Training Tips

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Slowly the seasons shifted silently in the background. With winter at our doorstep whether we like it or not, it provides us with the perfect excuse to sleep a little later, cook up comfort food and wrap ourselves in blankets while we fight off the Highveld chills. Although this does sound tempting, the winter months will allow us an opportunity to stay ahead of our health and keep fit.

Make staying healthy a highlight and high priority this winter.

Where, at the beginning of a new year, or when the sun is out, you might find yourself motivated and making your way to the gym or stepping out for a run; winter tends to have the opposite effect on us. But you have the opportunity to make a mindful choice to prevent those early spring guilt feelings after weeks of indulgences and couch comforts. There has been an increase in online training modalities for those wanting to train from home and most fitness facilities now have generators. Take your pick and start practicing!

Winter Training Tips to keep you motivated and moving during the cold days:

  1. Warm up. You may be forgiven for not warming up during a heat wave but in winter the muscles and joints are colder than usual and needs to be warmed up to prevent injuries. Start slowly and raise your heart rate gradually.
  2. Take your time to cool down and stretch – keep warm after your exercise.
  3. If at any point you feel uncomfortable or are experiencing any unusual pain – stop. Never push yourself unnecessarily – listen to your body.
  4. Dress appropriately – trying to keep your body warm but remembering that your temperature will increase during the workout. Layers and breathing room work well.
  5. Stay motivated by setting realistic goals and rewards for reaching them. Progress can be made without additional pressure from not reaching unrealistic targets. Take it one step at a time.
  6. Nutrition plays a major role. Make the healthier choice – most of the time. Winter is a wonderful time to make nutrient rich soup and a variety of steamy vegetables.
  7. If you run or cycle on public roads – remember to be visible. During the winter months our daylight hours are fewer which will have us training in the dark – wear reflective gear and carry a light. Always be aware of your surroundings.
  8. Breathing and Smiling is as much a part of any workout as Heartbeats and Sweat – never forget that.

Happy Healthy training!

By Johanica Havenga

Photo by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash