Winter Exercise Guide – Tips For Winter Exercise
August 30, 2018 (No Comments) by Tahlia Peppard

Winter is coming! And this means Winter exercise needs to be considered. As much as we hate to admit it and trust us, we really do, Summer is coming to an end and that means the greatest heatwave we’ve seen in 30 years is going to be a distant memory. We all hate those cold Winter months, you don’t want to leave the house because it’s so cold and everyone is wrapped up and if you’re standing still, well good luck not freezing you backside off.

Not everyone is a gym nut with many people just wanting to do a small bit of exercise to keep them healthy. Gyms are expensive, so you might only use them now and again for some weight training or specific classes. They’re not always easy to get to so we want to help you work around that by giving you a simple to follow guide to help exercise in the Winter months. So if that’s what you’re looking for then here’s what were going to give you;

  1. Fuel Tips For Your Winter Exercise Guide
  2. Winter Exercise Gear To Wear
  3. A Basic Workout Guide

Our aim is to keep this as simple as possible and make sure you get the some easy to consume exercise advice which is not over complicated and allows you to get out and keep fit this coming Winter.

Fuel Tips For Your Winter Exercise Guide

Winter exercise foods

As with any time of the year it is very important to make sure to fuel your body correctly before exercise. Keep in mind to eat these foods at least 30 minutes to 3 hours before your workout (we’re all different so try experimenting with the times to find which suits you best) – that way you’re not still digesting when you start exercising, but you haven’t gone and used up all those helpful calories yet.

Remember that these are snacks that are digested quickly and give you energy.

  • a granola bar
  • a piece of fruit
  • oatmeal
  • Greek yogurt
  • dried fruit
  • crackers
  • a rice cake
  • a piece of toast

You might also want to consider adding in some protein, especially if you’re doing some exercise with weights. When we do strength training exercises, like weight lifting, it creates small tears in your muscle fibres. When you rest, your body repairs those microtears, building up your muscles bigger and stronger than they were before—and it needs protein to do it. Some great sources are;

  • Nuts
  • Greek yogurt
  • A slice of turkey
  • A hard boiled egg
  • Milk or soy milk

Take into consideration the type of exercise you’re going to be doing; running, weights, cardio or circuits and adjust your pre-workout meal accordingly.

Winter Exercise Gear To Wear

Winter exercise clothing

Dressing for the cold is crucial to maintaining your exercise regime throughout the winter. It’s no longer as easy as throwing on cotton sweats and slogging through the snow or rain. New brands are constantly reinventing gear to keep you warm even when the temperatures drop below zero. The proper way to dress for cold weather workouts is in light layers. Exercising can make it feel 30 degrees warmer than it is outside. Overdressing, or wearing one heavy outer garment, causes too much sweating. You should be wearing the right mix of materials to cut down on any health risks.

The Right Base Layers

Winter is an unpredictable time for exercising so so any runners out there, you’re sure to be aware of the ‘Layering System’. This is simply wearing a number of the right type of layers to make sure your body heat is not in the extremes of too hot or too cold. The idea of wearing a heavy top is now considered archaic.

Over time it’s been learned that layering you running/exercise gear can allow sweat to move away from the skin instead of trapping moisture which can leave you feeling uncomfortable and cold. It’s suggested that at the beginning of your exercise that you should be slightly cold but within only a few minutes of exercise you should begin to feel warmer allowing you to adjust the items of clothing you’re wearing.

So how do you layer up? You need to get an initial base layer that is from a synthetic material to insulate and wick away moisture from your skin keeping you dry and warm. Lifestyle Sports have a great selection of base layers for all seasons which can be used for running.

Next up is picking the right insulating layer. This layer is the one directly over your base layer. This layer needs to perform the task of wicking moisture away while also keeping you warm. Nike offer some really good examples of this types of gear. Here’s an example of one for women.

And with Winters in Ireland you’re sure to be getting either extreme rain or wind at some point so it’s important to consider what you need to be wearing during these weather extremes. You’re looking for a layer that should give you protection from the wind and moisture but also you need something that will allow the heat to escape so you don’t get too hot or cold. Full zip tops are always a great way to go as it allows you regulate yourself slightly by closing or opening the zip as little or as much as you need. Something like this is a great option.

The Right Leg Gear

When you exercise in the Winter your legs and feet are as important as any other part of your body for insulation, dryness and comfort. Shorts, tights, socks and trainers are all important parts to consider.

Tights/Running Pants: Unlike your upper body your legs will generate a lot more heat meaning there is less need for layers on your lower body. Apart from having more heat than shorts running tights will allow your muscles to stay warmer. Keeping your hamstring, quad and calf muscles warm improve your chance of staying strain free. An extra tip here is around what to wear under your tights… Most runners wearing tights will skip underpants that day as it can reduce the risk of chafing. If it’s really cold or you want to keep your modesty then stick a pair of lightweight running shorts over. It’s actually rather considerate for other non runners. Lifestyle Sports also have a great selection of ladies running pants right here . As with our other recommendations, don’t forget to consider wicking materials.

The Right Sock: Finding the right sock for winter exercise is actually more important than you would think. Why you ask? Well it’s actually pretty simple and will apply to a lot of the training gear you need in the Winter season when working out. Using 100% cotton socks is not to be advised. The idea behind this that if cotton socks gets wet from either from a puddle, rain or sweat they will stay wet. In turn this means you’re looking at getting cold feet and potentially blisters or other issues.

With this in mind it’s important to know which materials will be more suitable. What you should be looking for are synthetic based socks. Acrylic and polyester are the go to materials for this. They’ll allow your feet to breath and should reduce risk of chafing massively. Nike offer a suitable example of a running sock that can work well. So if you have been using normal sports socks for running maybe it’s time to upgrade into a proper sock that will be more suitable.

Running Shoes

Last but not least is the key component of the running shoe. You’ve picked the right sock, designed to reduce risk of chilled sweaty feet that might tear or blister, now you’ve got to consider what you need for a running shoe.

Your feet can actually stay warm as long as they don’t get too wet. While getting proper socks to help wick away moisture there is only so much they can do. You’ll have rain and puddles that are not always avoidable. DON’T pick a running show with mesh. It’s not suitable for exercising outdoors in the Winter months. Water is sure to seep in and get your feet wet and in the process void the benefit of your fancy new socks! Check out this selection of men’s running shoes to find a suitable pair.

Easy Winter Exercises

Before you start make sure to do at least 10 minutes of either walking, cycling or light running to warm up your body. The last thing you want to do is injure something. Each of these workouts will challenge your whole body, although some are designed to focus on either the lower or upper body or the core.

10 Push-ups

We’re sure most peopl know what a push-up is, but here is just a little refresher on how to do them properly. When down on the ground, set your hands at a distance that is slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Think of your body as 1 straight line. Your head should be looking straight ahead. With your arms straight, butt clenched, and abs braced, steadily lower yourself until your elbows are at a 90-degree angle or smaller.

Jumping Jacks for 1 minute

We’re assuming we all know how to do a jumping jack. Here’s a simple You Tube video if you don’t.

10 Spider Lunges

Get into a push-up (plank) position, with your hands under your shoulders and your back flat. Bring your right foot to the outside of your right hand and land with a flat foot. Return your foot back to the starting position. Repeat on other side. Maintain a strong plank position throughout

Repeat Jumping Jacks for 1 minute

See above!

10 Jumping Lunges

To start, stand up with your knees slightly bent and your left foot a little in front of the right. With your core engaged, push off the bottom of both feet into a jump, switching the position of your feet in midair, landing in a basic lunge with your right leg in front. Without rest, repeat this movement alternating which leg is in front. To prevent injury, make sure your back leg is bent directly underneath your body and your front leg is bent at 90 degrees at the knee and hip.

Repeat Jumping Jacks for 1 minute

See above! (again)

10 Walkouts

Bend at the hips and plant your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart, a couple of inches in front of your feet. Walk your hands forward until your body is in a push-up position. Now reverse the entire movement and return to standing.

Side Lunges – 10 each side

Assume a standing position, with the knees and hips slightly bent, feet shoulder-width apart, and the head and chest up. Staying low, take a slow, lateral step to the right. Keep your toes pointed forward and stay low. Extend the left knee, driving your weight to the right, flexing the knee and hip into a side lunge. Maintain good posture through the entire spine, keeping your head and chest up. Pause at the bottom of the motion, and then extend through the working leg to return to a standing position, transitioning into a lunge to the opposite side.

Crunches – 12-15

Again, we’re sure many of you know how to do a crunch, but here is a guide on how to get the best out of your crunch. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart. Place your hands behind your head so your thumbs are behind your ears. Don’t lace your fingers together.
Tilt your chin slightly, leaving a few inches of space between your chin and your chest and gently pull your abdominals inward. Curl up and forward so that your head, neck, and shoulder blades lift off the floor. Hold for a moment at the top of the movement and then lower slowly back down.

30 second plank

This is arguably one of the most challenging exercises to do, but it works almost every muscle.
Holding the body (light as a feather) stiff as a board develops strength primarily in the core as well as the shoulders, arms, and glutes. Plant the hands directly under the shoulders (slightly wider than shoulder-width apart). Ground the toes into the floor and squeeze the glutes to stabilize the body. Your legs should be working in the move too; careful not to lock or hyperextend your knees. Your head should be line with your back. Neutralize the neck and spine by looking at a spot on the floor about a foot beyond the hands. Hold the position for 30 seconds.

Some Key Winter Exercise Tips

  • Wear reflective tape on your clothing or a vest, to be safe when it’s dark out.
  • Begin your workout facing into the wind and return with the wind at your back to avoid a wind chill after you’ve been sweating.
  • Get a workout buddy: You need someone that will help you stay motivated and you do the same for them. Having someone along side you will push you to keep going.
  • Rewards system: Having something to look forward to after your workout will motivate you to do it. You must be strict on yourself and if you don’t do it properly or at all, you don’t get your reward.

Winter Exercise Motivation

It’s very easy to lose motivation to exercise, especially during the Winter months when it can be absolutely freezing outside. The days get colder, shorter, wetter and darker, and the last thing you want to be doing is waking up early in freezing temperatures to go for a run or hitting up the gym after a dreary day of work. But fear not, we have some tips for you to help stay motivated.

Change your perspective: Shift your thinking from couch potato mentality to thinking like an athlete.
Set a goal: There’s nothing more motivating than that first 5K looming in bold letters on the calendar. Register early and commit to an exercise program that will get you in shape by race day.
Join the gym: Paying for the gym is usually a good motivator because you don’t want your money to go to waste.

With this guide, the key is to find what really makes you tick when it comes to fitness, since that’s how you stay on track, regardless of your energy levels that week.

You have to always re-evaluate why you want to train so hard and why you want to improve. Your “why” is more important than anything. So if it’s fitness, to lose weight or to find more energy you’ll need to get the basics above right to make it slightly less of an uphill battle.

Tahlia Peppard
I’m interested in writing and reading as well as keeping up with entertainment news as a personal interest. Love to travel and meet new people!

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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Winter Exercise Guide – Tips For Winter Exercise
August 30, 2018 (No Comments) by Tahlia Peppard

Winter is coming! And this means Winter exercise needs to be considered. As much as we hate to admit it and trust us, we really do, Summer is coming to an end and that means the greatest heatwave we’ve seen in 30 years is going to be a distant memory. We all hate those cold Winter months, you don’t want to leave the house because it’s so cold and everyone is wrapped up and if you’re standing still, well good luck not freezing you backside off.

Not everyone is a gym nut with many people just wanting to do a small bit of exercise to keep them healthy. Gyms are expensive, so you might only use them now and again for some weight training or specific classes. They’re not always easy to get to so we want to help you work around that by giving you a simple to follow guide to help exercise in the Winter months. So if that’s what you’re looking for then here’s what were going to give you;

  1. Fuel Tips For Your Winter Exercise Guide
  2. Winter Exercise Gear To Wear
  3. A Basic Workout Guide

Our aim is to keep this as simple as possible and make sure you get the some easy to consume exercise advice which is not over complicated and allows you to get out and keep fit this coming Winter.

Fuel Tips For Your Winter Exercise Guide

Winter exercise foods

As with any time of the year it is very important to make sure to fuel your body correctly before exercise. Keep in mind to eat these foods at least 30 minutes to 3 hours before your workout (we’re all different so try experimenting with the times to find which suits you best) – that way you’re not still digesting when you start exercising, but you haven’t gone and used up all those helpful calories yet.

Remember that these are snacks that are digested quickly and give you energy.

  • a granola bar
  • a piece of fruit
  • oatmeal
  • Greek yogurt
  • dried fruit
  • crackers
  • a rice cake
  • a piece of toast

You might also want to consider adding in some protein, especially if you’re doing some exercise with weights. When we do strength training exercises, like weight lifting, it creates small tears in your muscle fibres. When you rest, your body repairs those microtears, building up your muscles bigger and stronger than they were before—and it needs protein to do it. Some great sources are;

  • Nuts
  • Greek yogurt
  • A slice of turkey
  • A hard boiled egg
  • Milk or soy milk

Take into consideration the type of exercise you’re going to be doing; running, weights, cardio or circuits and adjust your pre-workout meal accordingly.

Winter Exercise Gear To Wear

Winter exercise clothing

Dressing for the cold is crucial to maintaining your exercise regime throughout the winter. It’s no longer as easy as throwing on cotton sweats and slogging through the snow or rain. New brands are constantly reinventing gear to keep you warm even when the temperatures drop below zero. The proper way to dress for cold weather workouts is in light layers. Exercising can make it feel 30 degrees warmer than it is outside. Overdressing, or wearing one heavy outer garment, causes too much sweating. You should be wearing the right mix of materials to cut down on any health risks.

The Right Base Layers

Winter is an unpredictable time for exercising so so any runners out there, you’re sure to be aware of the ‘Layering System’. This is simply wearing a number of the right type of layers to make sure your body heat is not in the extremes of too hot or too cold. The idea of wearing a heavy top is now considered archaic.

Over time it’s been learned that layering you running/exercise gear can allow sweat to move away from the skin instead of trapping moisture which can leave you feeling uncomfortable and cold. It’s suggested that at the beginning of your exercise that you should be slightly cold but within only a few minutes of exercise you should begin to feel warmer allowing you to adjust the items of clothing you’re wearing.

So how do you layer up? You need to get an initial base layer that is from a synthetic material to insulate and wick away moisture from your skin keeping you dry and warm. Lifestyle Sports have a great selection of base layers for all seasons which can be used for running.

Next up is picking the right insulating layer. This layer is the one directly over your base layer. This layer needs to perform the task of wicking moisture away while also keeping you warm. Nike offer some really good examples of this types of gear. Here’s an example of one for women.

And with Winters in Ireland you’re sure to be getting either extreme rain or wind at some point so it’s important to consider what you need to be wearing during these weather extremes. You’re looking for a layer that should give you protection from the wind and moisture but also you need something that will allow the heat to escape so you don’t get too hot or cold. Full zip tops are always a great way to go as it allows you regulate yourself slightly by closing or opening the zip as little or as much as you need. Something like this is a great option.

The Right Leg Gear

When you exercise in the Winter your legs and feet are as important as any other part of your body for insulation, dryness and comfort. Shorts, tights, socks and trainers are all important parts to consider.

Tights/Running Pants: Unlike your upper body your legs will generate a lot more heat meaning there is less need for layers on your lower body. Apart from having more heat than shorts running tights will allow your muscles to stay warmer. Keeping your hamstring, quad and calf muscles warm improve your chance of staying strain free. An extra tip here is around what to wear under your tights… Most runners wearing tights will skip underpants that day as it can reduce the risk of chafing. If it’s really cold or you want to keep your modesty then stick a pair of lightweight running shorts over. It’s actually rather considerate for other non runners. Lifestyle Sports also have a great selection of ladies running pants right here . As with our other recommendations, don’t forget to consider wicking materials.

The Right Sock: Finding the right sock for winter exercise is actually more important than you would think. Why you ask? Well it’s actually pretty simple and will apply to a lot of the training gear you need in the Winter season when working out. Using 100% cotton socks is not to be advised. The idea behind this that if cotton socks gets wet from either from a puddle, rain or sweat they will stay wet. In turn this means you’re looking at getting cold feet and potentially blisters or other issues.

With this in mind it’s important to know which materials will be more suitable. What you should be looking for are synthetic based socks. Acrylic and polyester are the go to materials for this. They’ll allow your feet to breath and should reduce risk of chafing massively. Nike offer a suitable example of a running sock that can work well. So if you have been using normal sports socks for running maybe it’s time to upgrade into a proper sock that will be more suitable.

Running Shoes

Last but not least is the key component of the running shoe. You’ve picked the right sock, designed to reduce risk of chilled sweaty feet that might tear or blister, now you’ve got to consider what you need for a running shoe.

Your feet can actually stay warm as long as they don’t get too wet. While getting proper socks to help wick away moisture there is only so much they can do. You’ll have rain and puddles that are not always avoidable. DON’T pick a running show with mesh. It’s not suitable for exercising outdoors in the Winter months. Water is sure to seep in and get your feet wet and in the process void the benefit of your fancy new socks! Check out this selection of men’s running shoes to find a suitable pair.

Easy Winter Exercises

Before you start make sure to do at least 10 minutes of either walking, cycling or light running to warm up your body. The last thing you want to do is injure something. Each of these workouts will challenge your whole body, although some are designed to focus on either the lower or upper body or the core.

10 Push-ups

We’re sure most peopl know what a push-up is, but here is just a little refresher on how to do them properly. When down on the ground, set your hands at a distance that is slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Think of your body as 1 straight line. Your head should be looking straight ahead. With your arms straight, butt clenched, and abs braced, steadily lower yourself until your elbows are at a 90-degree angle or smaller.

Jumping Jacks for 1 minute

We’re assuming we all know how to do a jumping jack. Here’s a simple You Tube video if you don’t.

10 Spider Lunges

Get into a push-up (plank) position, with your hands under your shoulders and your back flat. Bring your right foot to the outside of your right hand and land with a flat foot. Return your foot back to the starting position. Repeat on other side. Maintain a strong plank position throughout

Repeat Jumping Jacks for 1 minute

See above!

10 Jumping Lunges

To start, stand up with your knees slightly bent and your left foot a little in front of the right. With your core engaged, push off the bottom of both feet into a jump, switching the position of your feet in midair, landing in a basic lunge with your right leg in front. Without rest, repeat this movement alternating which leg is in front. To prevent injury, make sure your back leg is bent directly underneath your body and your front leg is bent at 90 degrees at the knee and hip.

Repeat Jumping Jacks for 1 minute

See above! (again)

10 Walkouts

Bend at the hips and plant your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart, a couple of inches in front of your feet. Walk your hands forward until your body is in a push-up position. Now reverse the entire movement and return to standing.

Side Lunges – 10 each side

Assume a standing position, with the knees and hips slightly bent, feet shoulder-width apart, and the head and chest up. Staying low, take a slow, lateral step to the right. Keep your toes pointed forward and stay low. Extend the left knee, driving your weight to the right, flexing the knee and hip into a side lunge. Maintain good posture through the entire spine, keeping your head and chest up. Pause at the bottom of the motion, and then extend through the working leg to return to a standing position, transitioning into a lunge to the opposite side.

Crunches – 12-15

Again, we’re sure many of you know how to do a crunch, but here is a guide on how to get the best out of your crunch. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart. Place your hands behind your head so your thumbs are behind your ears. Don’t lace your fingers together.
Tilt your chin slightly, leaving a few inches of space between your chin and your chest and gently pull your abdominals inward. Curl up and forward so that your head, neck, and shoulder blades lift off the floor. Hold for a moment at the top of the movement and then lower slowly back down.

30 second plank

This is arguably one of the most challenging exercises to do, but it works almost every muscle.
Holding the body (light as a feather) stiff as a board develops strength primarily in the core as well as the shoulders, arms, and glutes. Plant the hands directly under the shoulders (slightly wider than shoulder-width apart). Ground the toes into the floor and squeeze the glutes to stabilize the body. Your legs should be working in the move too; careful not to lock or hyperextend your knees. Your head should be line with your back. Neutralize the neck and spine by looking at a spot on the floor about a foot beyond the hands. Hold the position for 30 seconds.

Some Key Winter Exercise Tips

  • Wear reflective tape on your clothing or a vest, to be safe when it’s dark out.
  • Begin your workout facing into the wind and return with the wind at your back to avoid a wind chill after you’ve been sweating.
  • Get a workout buddy: You need someone that will help you stay motivated and you do the same for them. Having someone along side you will push you to keep going.
  • Rewards system: Having something to look forward to after your workout will motivate you to do it. You must be strict on yourself and if you don’t do it properly or at all, you don’t get your reward.

Winter Exercise Motivation

It’s very easy to lose motivation to exercise, especially during the Winter months when it can be absolutely freezing outside. The days get colder, shorter, wetter and darker, and the last thing you want to be doing is waking up early in freezing temperatures to go for a run or hitting up the gym after a dreary day of work. But fear not, we have some tips for you to help stay motivated.

Change your perspective: Shift your thinking from couch potato mentality to thinking like an athlete.
Set a goal: There’s nothing more motivating than that first 5K looming in bold letters on the calendar. Register early and commit to an exercise program that will get you in shape by race day.
Join the gym: Paying for the gym is usually a good motivator because you don’t want your money to go to waste.

With this guide, the key is to find what really makes you tick when it comes to fitness, since that’s how you stay on track, regardless of your energy levels that week.

You have to always re-evaluate why you want to train so hard and why you want to improve. Your “why” is more important than anything. So if it’s fitness, to lose weight or to find more energy you’ll need to get the basics above right to make it slightly less of an uphill battle.

Tahlia Peppard
I’m interested in writing and reading as well as keeping up with entertainment news as a personal interest. Love to travel and meet new people!

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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Follow us on Twitter

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