Saying goodbye to summer doesn’t mean you have to say good bye to your buff beach body. Here are some key tips and strategies to help transition your workouts from haze, heat and humidity of summer to cooler temperatures, less daylight and the unsettled weather of fall and winter. Chilly temps are right around the corner, but not to worry, sunny days are still ahead!
Take it out side: If you’ve been relying on the gym’s AC to cool your body, now is the perfect time to try a workout in the great outdoors. Less humidity and cooler temperatures are perfect conditions to get your sweat on, burn some calories and tone your body.
Take it inside: If you’ve been one of those warm weather workout folks, doing every cardio and strength session outside, consider shaking it up a bit with some indoor fitness options. Extreme heat takes a toll on the body and cooling system, so your body will thank you for taking your workout indoors. Plus you get the added bonus of challenging your muscles on machines and classes only found at the gym.
Dress for success: If you choose to exercise outside, it’s important to dress for the elements. Layer your clothing with wicking and breathable fabrics. Cotton is not a good choice because it traps sweat, dries slowly and therefore creates a cold and wet layer - not fun. Wear light layers that can be peeled off as your body temperature rises. Consider an outer layer of fleece or a waterproof shell in case of rain or snow.
Try a new indoor activity: Nothing says start fresh more that autumn. Now is the time to try some new workouts at the gym. Scan the group exercise schedule and pick a few classes that will challenge your body and take you out of your comfort zone. If you like the cardio machines, try intervals where you increase the intensity for 1 - 2 minutes at a time and then recover at a decreased intensity for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Go out and play: Winter is a natural outdoor playground where activities abound when the snow hits. Try snowshoeing or cross-country skiing (most sport stores offer rentals). Get a group of people together for a touch football game. No snow? Train for a 5K run or walk, rollerblade, jump rope or rock climb. The options are limitless and the outdoor playground is yours to explore.
Cold weather hydration: Even though the humid days of summer are behind us, the need to stay hydrated is just a important. If you’re working out that means you’re losing fluids that must be replaced. Fluid aids in body recovery, muscle contraction and warding off fatigue. Drink up!
Hot head: Up to 50% of your body heat can be lost through your head on a cold day, so be sure to wear a synthetic, wool, or fleece hat to keep that noggin warm and your body heat contained.
Safety first: As summer fades away, days grow shorter and daylight is at a premium. If you are an early riser or an after-work outdoor enthusiast, be sure to make yourself visible. Wear reflective gear, bright colors and if possible a small bike light that can be attached to your wrist. If you are in an unsafe area, carry a whistle for uncertain times.
SPF, not just for summer: Sunscreen and the beach go hand-in-hand, but winter sun and snow can be just as dangerous. Be sure to lather up exposed skin areas and reapply if you encounter excessive sweating.
Get wet: Swimming in oceans, lakes and rivers may be on hold until next year, but a pool is a great alternative when the weather gets chilly. Swimming tones the entire body, is a great cardio workout for burning calories and is easy on the joints. Check our club listings for a pool near you.