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Winter training secrets

Super tips for training in winter

Winter is coming, but that is no reason whatsoever not to train outdoors!

The evidence in favor of getting outside for regular exercise continues to grow—a 2012 Glasgow University study reports a 50% improvement in mental health when people are active outdoors versus at the gym. Specific improvements involved mild depression, sleep problems, stress, and feeling unable to cope. The researchers found that walking, running, biking, and other outdoor activities through green space lowered stress. (Reference 1)

progressThere is also that great feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment after doing a British Military Fitness class outside in the elements.  Training in different weather conditions makes your body more adaptable and resilient as opposed to the regulated conditions in gym. By adapting your approach to training, you will be able to adapt your approach to other obstacles or problems that you face in your daily lives.

In winter gyms get busier, more crowded and stuffier, whereas the outdoors offer a refreshing change from the rarified air of the office. Rather get outside and stimulate your senses.

Here are the BMF SA top tips:

  1.  Don’t try and plan for the weather, train regardless. Pack your training clothes no matter the weather. “if it aint raining, it aint training!”
  2.  Have a designated training partner, so that you can motivate and encourage one another to get to the classes. Drag a friend down to BMF!
  3.  Reward yourself for getting to training. A well earned hot chocolate, beer or glass of wine after a class will give you tremendous satisfaction. Remember it’s got to be well earned and don’t get carried away! Other rewards can be new fitness clothes or training shoes(less calories, unless you eat them!) If you buy a new pair of trainers, you will feel guilty if you don’t use them!
  4. Set yourself goals. Short term(eg enter a 5km run), medium term(eg enter a 10km run) or long term goal(eg. half or full marathon, or simply that you want take winter as your preparation for looking good on the beach in summer and fitting into your bikinini/boardies that much better!)
  5. Dress correctly for your training. Any fool can be cold and wet. If you have the right kit you will be better prepared and more effective in cold, wet and windy conditions.

i. Invest in a good set of gloves that will save your hands from being cold and wet.
ii. A good thermal top will do wonders for keeping you warm. Make sure you get the wicking fabric that moves moisture away from the skin and combine this with another layer. This way your skin can breathe and sweat, but not overheat, plus you stay protected from the elements. Wool is absolutely brilliant as a base layer for training in cold and wet.
iii. A beanie will be good for keeping your head warm when it’s really cold and a cap is great for keeping the rain out of your face.
iv. Keep a spare t-shirt and a towel in the car. Take off your wet t-shirt and put on a nice dry one after the class, so that you can drive home dry and warm!
BMF SA has some thermal tops and wicking t-shirts from First Ascent, so email if you want to get one..




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