Regular exercise has a positive impact on the body and mind.
The winter season introduces big changes to our lifestyles; from a drop in temperature to darker nights.
This means that our moods can change just as easily. Therefore, feeling lazy and unmotivated can often disrupt plans of keeping in shape throughout the year.
Everybody knows that the ‘winter blues’ is a rational explanation as to why we become lethargic and lazy.
But it’s extremely important to keep fit and healthy during the chilly season, so here are 5 ways to keep fit during the winter.
There is no doubt that Zumba has come a long way since it was founded in 2001. The combination of dance steps and aerobics has motivated the world to keep in shape.
Combining business with pleasure is the perfect way to describe Zumba. Unlike going to the gym in the cold weather, Zumba allows friends and family to come together whilst maintaining your figure and staying in shape.
With music that literally pumps through your veins and a range of dance routines to choose from, Zumba is one exercise trend that you are in control of – all that is left to do is to get dancing!
Zumba is a universal exercise so no matter how old you are, make sure you don’t miss out – happy dancing!
If you are not a dance fanatic and loud music is more threatening than motivating, then you may want to stick to the much calmer art of yoga.
Yoga is universally known for its soothing effects and relaxation techniques. It is beneficial both physically and mentally, which makes yoga popular amongst those that like to meditate and keep the mind healthy.
Yoga is great for toning and strengthening those core muscles and helps energise the body, leaving it feeling fresh through the roughest of winter days.
The great thing about yoga is that you don’t have to leave the comfort of your home if you have enough space.
For amateurs in the art of yoga you might want to go back to basics and begin with simple back bends and stretching before attempting the more strenuous poses.
Indian health professionals have claimed that yoga helps to stimulate the mind and helps reduce stress levels. And if you are really eager, why not try out the new craze known as ‘Hot Bikram Yoga’?
Hot yoga is an intense form of yoga which can help with weight loss and help boost the body’s biomechanics.
Early morning jogs
Get an early and productive start to the day by warming the body up for a busy day ahead. By beginning with a body warmer, your body is prepared for the cold weather.
Accompanied by a jogging partner or even an iPod, make sure you make the ‘chore’ of exercising fun. Changing the course of your run can also make your early morning jogs more interesting and challenging.
A committed early morning jogger reveals how it helps her concentrate:
“It’s fun and definitely gets me going for the day. I don’t go to the gym so I feel I am keeping fit by jogging more than four times a week. I also find it refreshes my mind and helps me concentrate.”
Although it may not be as formal as a gym membership, jogging should be taken seriously and the appropriate clothing should be worn to avoid injuries or strains.
Dumbbells are becoming increasingly popular amongst women who are searching for toning exercises. Stationary lunges are good for toning and strengthening the lower body – from the glutes all the way to the muscles in your lower legs.
The exercise is performed by bending one leg forward and the other leg backward, so the body is lowered from its original position. It is extremely easy to perform but again there are risk implications that you need to be aware of.
Strenuous exercises can strain muscles and potentially damage them, so make sure you take breaks in between workouts and do your stretches before and after your workout!
Keep in mind that everyone is different. So when lifting dumbbells, make sure you are able to carry the weight without straining yourself!
Engaging in sports
There’s no better way to exercise and keep your body in shape than by joining a local team or even assembling a team of keen football or badminton players.
Whatever sport you choose, you know you will always have fellow team members to motivate you and keep you going through the winter weather.
Any students can check to see if your university has a team of any of the sports you are interested in, or for non-students you can organise matches between groups of friends to get things going.
Staying fit and healthy over the winter months can be a challenge for most of us. But what is important to remember is that your body needs more protection from the cold than in any other weather.
It’s difficult to refuse sugary treats over the festive season, but challenge yourself to stay healthy and avoid overindulging in the bad stuff! The best way to avoid unhealthy nibbling is to adopt the famous 80/20 diet rule.
This diet allows you to eat your favourite foods, whilst eating a healthy diet. The rule is to eat 80 per cent healthy and indulge only 20 per cent.
Making wise food choices is never an easy task but if you start now, you won’t have to fight it during the holidays and festive periods.
Now with all the exercise trends revealed, it’s up to you to make it happen. Remember that regular exercise has a positive impact on the body and mind. Just be careful not to push yourself too hard.