It’s that time of year again – shorter days and bad weather make it difficult to maintain the motivation to get out there and exercise. We all know what normally wins the toss up between going running in the pouring rain or cozying up on the sofa… But with Christmas parties just around the corner, hibernation is not going to help you feel and look great so swap those slippers for trainers and beat those seasonal blues.

Follow these tips for safe exercise during the winter:


1. Wear Layered Clothing

While it may be tempting to wear just one or two thick layers in cold weather, it is better to dress in a few thinner layers which you can take off as you sweat and overheat. A good first layer would be of a synthetic material, such as polypropylene, as it draws sweat away from the body. A second layer of fleece with a waterproof on top is a good combination that you can peel away as your body heats up.


2. Stay Visible

Shorter days may mean your post work run may be plunged into darkness, so it is really important to stay visible when on the roads. A high visibility jacket is essential for any outdoor exercise in the dark.


3. Pre Exercise Prep

Stretching your muscles before and after exercise may seem obvious, but it is especially important when braving the cold. Aside from stretching, it is also beneficial to do some cardio for a few minutes before you go outside, in order to get your blood flowing and increase your heart rate. Good examples of this would be star jumps or even running up and down the stairs a few times.


4. Stay Hydrated

This is one many people forget, but it is just as important to stay hydrated in the winter as it is when exercising in warmer conditions.


5. Beware Of Ice

When running on icy or snowy paths, a good tip is to shorten your stride and keep your feet lower to the ground in order to minimize the risk of slipping. Try to run or cycle on well lit, well gritted routes if the ground is icy and be especially careful early in the morning.


6. Stay Connected

Due to the increased risk of injury in the winter months, it is sensible to bring your mobile phone with you when exercising out and about, or even better – go with a friend!


And Finally…

If braving the wind and rain just isn’t for you, Fitness Matters has a complete private gym with a great team of experienced and knowledgeable personal trainers to help you achieve your goals.

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