How to Exercise in Cold Weather

It’s freezing outside, it’s freezing when you exercise. Your home gym
isn’t isolated. Your gym manager doesn’t heat the gym. But that doesn’t
stop you. You decided to stop making excuses not to exercise because
it’s too cold.

Here’s how to exercise in cold weather. This guide is aimed at strength
training & weight lifting, but you can use the tips for other sports
 too.


Be Confident. Cold weather is easier than hot weather: no headaches from
 the heat, no sweating. The first 5 mins are the hardest. Once warmed
up, you won’t feel the cold anymore. Remember this.


Warm Clothes. Wearing a sweater adds inches to the bar, making it harder
 on exercises like Front Squats to put the bar correctly. I remove my
sweater during worksets, and put it back on between sets.

Try also a woollen hat to avoid sinus & ear infections from the cold
 weather.


Warm-up Routine. You can’t injure a warmed up muscle as easily as a cold
 one. Warm-up sets are a start, but you can do more than that and the 5
min cardio. Some ideas:

    Dynamic Stretches. Leg swings & side leg swings, body-weight
Squats, body-weight lunges, lateral lunges, shoulder dislocations, etc
    Barbell Complexes. Empty barbell. 3x Hang Power Clean, 3x Front
Squat, 3x Push Press, 3x Overhead Squat. Repeat for 3 to 5 sets.
    Body-weight Exercises. Jumping Jacks or better, Burpees.

Remember: the goal is to raise your body temperature, while warming up
joints & muscles. Don’t get yourself tired.


Rest Less Between Sets. Load the bar & do your next set. This
quickly gets you warmed up. If your workset is 5×5 100kg on the Squat,
do this without resting:

    2×5 20kg
    5x40kg
    3x60kg
    2x80kg

Then move to 5×5 100kg taking 1 min rest between sets. If you struggle
to get all reps, take 2-3 min rest & walk between sets to keep warm.


Hand Care. Gloves don’t work for weight lifting: they add inches to the
bar, making it impossible to grip the bar correctly.

    Warm-up Your Hands. Rub your hands between sets, clap them. Your
body temperature will warm-up the cold bar.
    Hand Cream. Cold weather makes your skin dry. Dry skin gets chapped,
 irritated & red. Use hand cream before going to bed.


Don’t Rationalize. Never rationalize that it’s too cold, that you’re
going to get sick or whatever excuse you can find. Make a decision &
 stick to it.

    Set a time to exercise
    Eat one hour before exercising
    Dress for the gym directly after eating
    Prepare your gym bag
    Review your training journal: last workout, today’s workout
    When it’s time to exercise: get up & go to the gym

Just do it.

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