When you think of winter, what activities come to mind? For many, sipping hot cocoa, relaxing by the fireplace or reading in a comfortable recliner might be the top picks. Any thoughts of venturing into the outdoors vanish with the leaves as temperatures drop in the fall. But did you know there are many advantages to staying active in the winter? Your Brampton physiotherapist recommends outdoor exercises for several reasons.
No, your therapist isn’t crazy for recommending stepping out into the cold. It can actually be good for you! Exercising outdoors in colder weather offers the following benefits:
- Immune system boost: Research has shown that moderate exercise can boost your immune system. This helps you fight off infections. If you can get out there and stay active throughout the winter, you’ll be less likely to succumb to all the cold-weather illnesses that are so common in the winter.
- Calorie burn: When the weather is cooler, your body has to work harder to stay warm. This burns more calories! You’ll get your metabolism going, which requires the use of more fat and calories. The final results are a higher energy level and more calories burned.
- Mood enhancement: Have you heard of the winter blues? Staying inside all winter can be depressing. By going outside and exercising, you can increase the number of endorphins (happy brain chemicals) that are present in your system and help lift your mood. The outdoor exposure also allows you to soak up more vitamin D, which can further elevate your mood.
- Willpower win: If you can force yourself to face the outdoors during winter, you are strengthening your willpower. This will help you as you develop regular habits of exercise, establish healthy eating patterns and work toward other goals in life.
- Endurance elevator: Challenging, cold-weather exercises help strengthen your body. As you increase your endurance performance, you improve your heart, lungs and circulatory system. This enhances your endurance as well as your overall health.
- Cold tolerance: If you are willing to brave the cold weather to exercise, this can help you build up a tolerance for cool temperatures. Your regular visits to the outdoors for exercise can help you adapt to the chilly winters. Who knows—you may even start to enjoy the cold weather!
- Budget saver: Joining a gym can be expensive. If you’re looking for a way to cut back on your budget this winter, exercising outside can help. A simple walk doesn’t cost you anything but time and effort. Use the free outdoors to get great exercise—without working out your wallet.
Feel Great This Winter
Don’t let cold weather keep you cooped up indoors all winter. Take advantage of the many benefits of exercising outdoors in the cold weather. For additional tips on how to feel your best during every season, contact your Brampton physiotherapist at Paramount Physiotherapy & Sports Injuries Clinic. We offer education, exercise, manual therapy, modalities and acupuncture, to effectively reintegrate individuals into sports and regular activities of daily life. Reach out to us today for professional tips or treatment!