We know the feeling all too well of wanting to retreat indoors during the colder months and the challenge to drag yourself out there and stay active gets less and less appealing. On our quest for a new-found motivation we turned to our resident Personal Trainer, Pilate Coach and Nutrition Coach specialist; Niki Loe for the magic key.
Before winter really kicks in and you start hitting snooze a little more often, rugging-up and swapping your evening workouts for a wine by the fire, check out these top three reasons why it’s so important to keep moving during the winter months.
- Winter time is often when our bodies are most susceptible to illness. Keeping up some regular movement will warm you up, strengthen your immune system, reduce inflammation in the body and significantly reduce the risks of illness.
- Exercise enhances our energy and uplifts our mood with a steady release of feel-good brain chemicals.
- Vitamin D is essential for the regulation of calcium and phosphorous absorption, essential for strong, healthy bones and promotes healthy immune function. While it is difficult to obtain sufficient amounts of vitamin D from our diet, the body can produce large amounts of vitamin D with regular exposure to sunshine. Sunshine can be hard to come by in winter, especially during a wet New Zealand winter, making our exposure to the sun even more important.
Vitamin D + movement + sunshine = winter health and happiness!
Exercise does not have to be strict or repetitive, it does not need fancy equipment or machines.
We love to look at what is happening in the Blue Zones. They enjoy regular movement as a way of life and understand the importance of making it enjoyable in order for it to be sustainable. They love to walk, especially with the company of friends, and often walk everywhere. They love to garden and opt for movement that is restorative to both the body and mind including yoga, pilates, tai chi or group activities.
Sometimes the idea of adding exercise into our already crazy schedules can seem overwhelming and often ends up in the too hard basket. Try this: Stop thinking of exercise as something that must be done with equipment or must be done in a gym, we will start to realise that fitting some form of movement into our day – yes, every single day, is not as difficult as we think.
- Walk along the beach, up a mountain, in the park or even just around the block! Walking is a great time to be social and catch up with great friends. Try swapping out the occasional coffee date and asking your friend to join you for a walk instead. Walking is also an incredibly therapeutic time to fly solo, stretch out your body and clear your mind.
- Look for opportunities – stairs over elevators, park your car a block away, stand instead of sitting at every chance you can get, use your lunch break to have a big stretch, take your work/ meeting calls outside for a walk.
- Climb a tree.
- Jump in a puddle
- Take the kids to the park
Personal Trainer – Pilates Instructor – Nutrition Coach