Home' Northern Outlook : July 20th 2013 Contents 8 NORTHERN OUTLOOK, JULY 20, 2013
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Find your winter exercise motivation
By RACHAEL RICKARD
With rainy days and frosty mornings upon us,
don't be tempted to stash your workout gear.
With a change in season, set yourself a goal for
the winter months -- that way you'll be less
likely to find yourself hibernating on the couch
and be ready to kickstart spring with a great
base of fitness.
Continuing an exercise regime is good for
your mind and your body.
If you are outdoors, you'll also be getting
the Vitamin D your body needs. Vitamin D3 is
produced in our skin after exposure to
ultraviolet B light from the sun or artificial
A lack of Vitamin D can result in thin or
brittle bones, which may appear as rickets in
children or osteoporosis in older adults.
Getting more exercise will also lower your
risk of catching a cold.
Studies show those who exercise
moderately experience 30 per cent fewer colds
than those who don't.
However, if you do feel a cold or flu coming
on, the best advice is
not to train until you've shaken it. A flu or cold
puts extra stress on
Have a break from any hard cardio training
and do yoga or aqua aerobics until you feel
better. Then start back slowly, with light
So, if staying in shape, having strong bones,
being happier and having fewer colds appeals
to you, here are some suggestions for keeping
your motivation for exercise up this winter:
Get a goal. Setting yourself a goal to achieve
can help keep you focused and motivated on
the worst days. Attack your bucket list, and if
you don't have one, turn the television off and
get writing. There are plenty of half marathons
and marathons in spring that can act as good
base training for summer events and sports.
Get Googling or turn your next coffee date
with a friend into a goal-setting brainstorming
Join something different. Yoga, dance, lifting
weights, indoor cycling classes, martial arts, or
group training programmes can be beneficial
in giving your body a variety of exercises, and
by committing, you'll find yourself surrounded
by other people to help keep you motivated.
Getting outside? Layer it on. One of the
biggest mistakes cold-weather exercisers make
is dressing too warmly. Exercise generates a
considerable amount of heat --- enough to
make you feel like it's warmer than it really is.
At the same time, once you start to tire and
the sweat dries, you can get chilled. The
solution? Dress in layers.
Have two pairs of training shoes. One for wet
weather (an older pair) and the newer ones for
dry training conditions. Keep one in the hot
water cupboard and never put them in the
dryer. Once you've got the gear, there's
something quite enjoyable -- and a real sense
of achievement -- in training in the wet. It's
quite revitalising for the body and the soul.
Protect your extremities. When it's cold,
blood is directed to your body's core, leaving
your hands and feet vulnerable to the chill. Try
wearing a thin pair of gloves under a pair of
heavier gloves or mittens lined with wool or
fleece. You might want to buy thick thermal
sports socks or an extra pair of regular socks.
And don't forget a hat
Choose appropriate gear. If it's dark, wear
reflective clothing. To stay steady on your feet,
choose footwear with enough traction to
prevent falls. Wear a helmet for skiing and
Head out into the wind. You'll be less likely
to get chilled on the way back if you end your
workout -- when you may be sweaty -- with the
wind at your back.
Drink plenty of fluids. Drink water before,
during and after your workout, even if you're
not thirsty. You can become just as
dehydrated in the cold as in the heat, from
sweating, breathing and increased urine
Pay attention to wind chill. The wind can
penetrate your clothes and remove the
insulating layer of warm air that surrounds
your body. Fast motion -- such as skiing,
running, cycling -- creates wind chill because it
increases the air movement past your body. Be
aware of the wind chill and if it's too cold, hit
Almost everyone can exercise safely in the
cold, including people with asthma and heart
However, if you have health concerns, check
with your doctor or health professional first.
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