Beating “winter blues” with fitness

Cardiff winter warmer run – Bute park Photo: CNP

Frosty morning, cold wind and rain showers aren’t exactly an ideal situation to maintain physical fitness in winter months. But despite the unforgiving conditions of the weather, sports experts believe it is important to be involved in exercises that improves one’s overall health.

A report from World Health Organization estimates that 1.4 billion people worldwide are not doing enough exercises for good health. Experts find that the tendency to stay home, inactive and slumped is a lot higher during winter. The report was published  in the Lancet Global Heath Journal.

Natalie Green a sports therapist at The Gym Group said the benefits of regular exercises is far too great to be put on hold when workouts become inconvenient. “There is a huge slump in motivation and general participation in witness activities because people are shunned by the old, wind and wet weather”. People tend to lose their conditioning and gain weight when they stay indoors. She said that people’s reluctance on fitness activities corresponds to empty gym from October to December every year.

Natalie giving fitness instructions at The Gym Group

But working out winter proves to be beneficial if one is planning greater activities for sunnier months. “Working out in winter months helps you to build strength and prevent injuries for summer activities because most people plans on taking on summer activities. Having the preparation done is a huge benefits one’s health” says Natalie.

Outdoor fitness activities even helps people get small doses of sunshine which is essential for overall health that otherwise will be missed out if one chooses to stay indoors.

People intending to stay active on winter months could join outdoor and indoor health club to enjoy fitness activities. Taking part in a running marathon is great example that involves social engagement.

Martha Sheffield an avid runner, suggests taking precautions before running is key to avoiding sports injuries. “It is always good to practice warming up workouts such as stretching ankle, knee and hip and commit to at least one session at gym, will help your muscle for marathons” she said.

“Shocking your muscle with no prior stretch workout would only cause severe injury.”

She said planning out workout regimes for colder months and keeping focused on it would give one a sense of accountability to stay motivated. Switching up exercises every two weeks once in gym sessions with more challenging fitness activities will build strength and endurance over time.

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