Indoor workouts got you in a rut this winter? Well the good news is that you don’t need to restrict yourself to breaking a sweat indoors, actually you may want to consider more outdoor activities in colder temps and here is why!
Taking your fitness outside can help to burn more calories, raise your spirits and improve your immunity. This is because your heart doesn’t have to work as hard, therefore you will expend less energy allowing you to workout more efficiently. “Cold weather requires more cardiovascular work to distribute blood to the body. For regular exercisers and/or for mamas who were active before pregnancy, this can strengthen the heart muscle and help prepare the body for strenuous physical events like labor.” explains Portia Boston, NASM-certified personal trainer and certified perinatal specialist. Boston goes on to say that you should be mindful and always speak to your doctor if you have experienced heart or blood circulatory disorders in the past before taking on any exercise program.
Although you are not sweating as much research has shown that when you exercise in cold weather the body burns about thirty percent more calories when compared to exercise performed in warmer temperatures. Even shivering in cold weather can cause the body to burn extra calories. The body’s process called thermogenesis becomes more efficient at burning stored fat. In addition based on studies, exercising in cold weather can turn certain fat cells in your body to fat burning cells.
Need another reason to workout outside? Here’s one, Kirstin Nath founder of Kirstin Nath Fitness Education says “We have learned that people who exercise outdoors are able to increase their physical performance, while at the same time their level of perceived exertion actually declines. We’re able to work out harder, and enjoy it more! The outdoors can become an exerciser’s playground, as long as that person is able to deal with the environmental conditions such as temperature, terrain and weather safely.”
So what are you waiting for? It’s worth trying, right?
Below are some workouts that you can do outside in an instant:
Deep breathing and stretching exercises.
With all the benefits mentioned it’s worth giving an outdoor workout a go. Grab your layers and experience some frigid exercise before the weather warms up.
Many people turned to outdoor workouts as a physical and mental health break from being stuck inside.
As human beings, we have only relatively recently (in the Western world) begun living indoors and existing with substantial barriers to the outdoors whether by distance or actual walls. It’s simply not our natural biological state to exist completely indoors, and yet that is what we found ourselves doing almost exclusively in the spring of 2020, and even before that we mostly lived indoors.
We have learned that people who exercise outdoors are able to increase their physical performance, while at the same time their level of perceived exertion actually declines. We’re able to work out harder, and enjoy it more! The outdoors can become an exercise’s playground, as long as that person is able to deal with the environmental conditions such as temperature, terrain and weather safely. I work outdoors a great deal in the winter doing snow removal with our family business, and as long as I am dressed appropriately and moving, even hours of physical outdoor labor in below freezing temperatures is easily tolerable. I believe that is attributed to our hunter-gatherer ancestors from thousands of years ago who survived the majority of their lives outdoors. Working, playing and exercising outdoors is in fact, in our nature!