by DI Si
It is usually around this time of year when training outside might lose its appeal.
Personally, I actually believe you can get MORE out of training outside over the winter months .... Probably why I created Milton Keynes outdoor gym 15 years ago!! ;-)
Let's use this blog now in exploring and making you weatherproofed up so you are ready to tackle winter training!
The first point is - you WON'T be the only one that comes to training.
There will, of course, be an instructor; but the likelihood is that the people that you know and trained with over the year will still be there and dammit we will miss you if you stop coming! We might all be a little crazy - but hey let's be crazy together ;-)
In a time where we need to be very mindful of how close we are to others - training outside means you plenty of room! There are less surfaces that you will touch that others have and lets be honest there is no better ventilation than the great outdoors!
Did you know that being outside for just 20 minutes - even if you DON"T exercise is enough to boost your mood and just make you generally feel better!
A study from St Marys University stated that people report greater improvements to their mental wellbeing immediately following exercise outside compared to indoor.
It is things like green trees, natural sky views and parks/lakes fauna that change the blood flow patterns to the brain and help our mood!
You will challenge your muscles and burn more calories when training outside.
The unpredictability that the outdoors brings has rewards that being inside on a treadmill can never replicate.
1) Uneven ground creates greater muscle activity when running.
2) Wind provides a natural resistance that the body must work against.
3) Changes in terrain means a great range of muscles and core have to work harder.
Of course the gym might sound like the easy option now ;-) - But when has the easy option got the best results ?
There is a famous saying which I wholeheartedly agree with - "There is no such thing as bad weather - only inappropriate clothing"
The fundamentals to the right kit I would say is :
1) A pair of trail or running trainers that can take a bit of mud and water without falling apart.
2) A base-layer that will be the thing that stays on no matter how hot you get.
3) A lightweight fleece to hold out the initial cold before you get started.
4) A waterproof top if the heavens open ... but you are probably going to get wet anyway ;-)
5) Finally a lightweight beanie or hat to hold the heat in your head and a pair of gloves for your hands.
Once again you may find this will all happily come off after 10 mins of training.
The reason I find that people won't do something is mindset and their internal dialogue. It is the handbrake on why people don't get things done that they absolutely can!!
"I can't get up early"
"Winter is so depressing"
"I hate the cold"
"I can do so much more if I get up early"
"Winter brings such a beauty that you don't see in summer"
"I can outwork the cold and keep warm"
And in no time at all you will be not only maintaining or getting better results with your training BUT you will also have a better and stronger mindset! DOUBLE BOOM!!
If you give me your best excuse as why not to train outside I will find a turnaround that might help you.
See you outside while training! :-)