Winter fitness: Staying in shape in the cold
When the winter rolls in, your fitness plans can go out of the window in favour of cosy nights in front of the TV. Unfortunately, winter lasts for a good few months in the UK – so ditching fitness and eating unhealthily throughout the season will destroy any hopes you have of abs for the summer.
It doesn’t have to be that way. With a bit of foresight and planning, you can still get into shape without taking on the worst of the cold. Follow these tips and stay on track…
Eat to succeed
Comfort food is one of the best parts of winter: from takeaways to fuel your nights in the house to pub food when you’re out celebrating. While there’s nothing wrong with a few one offs, regularly binging like this will eliminate your fitness progress.
Warming comfort food doesn’t have to be unhealthy. If you prepare in advance, you can make warming bean chilli, lean chicken curry, lentil soup and other protein-rich foods that you can reheat and enjoy at any time of day. Worried about your nutrition when you’re commuting? Keep your protein intake high with protein powder mixed into milk or water.
Work out at home
If you’re low on energy, tired or demotivated, you’ll find it tough to hit the gym. Instead of throwing away your progress for that day, you can perform a short home workout to make sure you push yourself towards your goals – without leaving the comfort of your own house.
For muscle building, perform:
3 x 20 Press Ups
3 x 10 Pull Ups (Purchasing a pull up bar for your door is a must)
3 x 10 Jump Squats
3 x 10 Chair Tricep Dips
3 x 10 Wide Grip Press Ups
3 x 10 Chin Ups
3 x 60 Second Wall Sits
For those trying to slim down, perform the following:
3 x 15 Jump Squats
3 x 10 Burpees
5 x 45 Second High Knees (like jogging on the spot, bringing your knees to your chest) with 30 second rest in between sets
3 x 10 Tuck Jumps
3 x 20 Ab Crunches
Keep your health levels high
One of the first victims of winter are your vitamin D levels. Vital to the healthy functioning of the human body, vitamin D is important and easy to miss when you’re not getting exposure to the sun. A supplement in pill form will keep your levels topped up and help fend off the winter blues.
With all of the temptation to eat cheat meals and fatty food throughout the colder winter months, you’ll also want to maintain a high level of lean protein, fibre and vitamins. Ensure you’re preparing meals in advance and packing in all the green vegetables you can to promote health.
Winter doesn’t have to be a time to wave goodbye to fitness. By preparing in advance, keeping your nutrition game on point and doing a few workouts at home, you’ll be able to keep yourself healthy and ready for next year’s summer season.
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