For many of us, keeping up with our exercise routines during the winter months can be a bit challenging. Wherever you live, motivation plummets in the winter. Nevertheless, staying active and staying healthy during the winter is still essential to our overall health and wellbeing, so we asked celebrity trainer Jono Castano for some advice on how to keep exercising during winter!
As a Celebrity Personal Trainer and a member of the SmileDirectClub Confidence Council, Jono Castano has helped celebrities like Rebel Wilson, Rita Ora, and Richard Branson to transform their bodies and – most importantly – to maintain their hard-won physique. So, what advice does he have for those of us who dread the winter months?
Exercising throughout winter is important – it ensures you’re keeping up with your routine year-round and boosting that confidence where you can. It’s also a great way for our bodies to stay warm and keep moving. In colder months, the rise in your body temperature through a workout has a soothing, calming effect on your body. Additionally, our hearts don’t have to work as hard, meaning we spend less energy and can endure more. This also means you can burn more fat as your body works harder to heat up and stay warm.
Feeling the chill in the early mornings is a big enough reason to lose motivation for exercise. Not only that, but the days are shorter and colder, and all you want to do is rug up and eat more! A great way to stay motivated and keep those confidence levels up is to start investing in yourself. To hold yourself accountable, add a dollar value to your workout! Whether that means signing up for a class or program or getting a personal trainer, it’s a great start to investing in your health and well-being.
If these things aren’t for you, commit to exercising with a friend or start a community walk group that will be just as motivated as you are, and then you’ll have something to help keep you accountable. You can also build your confidence through other forms of investment. Research from SmileDirectClub shows that a third (34%) of Aussie adults believe that having their teeth straightened would give them the confidence to make plenty of lifestyle changes, including maintaining motivation for workouts.
Changes to your training program should always be aligned with your lifestyle and goals, not the weather. If the colder weather doesn’t suit the type of exercise you do, find a warm place where you can get it done indoors. No excuses!
One of the biggest misconceptions about training in the colder months is that you don’t have to hydrate as much. This is because you don’t notice how much you’re sweating in the cooler weather, but not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration, and ultimately you won’t get the most out of your workouts. Another misconception about working out in winter is that you don’t require sun protection when training outdoors. The UV rays are just as intense regardless of the heat, so you definitely need to protect yourself by wearing a hat and SPF.
It truly is the same advice I would give for working out all year round – hydrate, eat a balanced diet, listen to your body, and make sure you get a good amount of rest and recovery. I can only add to make sure you layer your clothes. It may start off cold, but you will definitely get warmer as you get into the workout.
Time and exercise frequency depend on the person's fitness level and lifestyle. I wouldn't say there is a specific number of sessions you should be doing or the duration of your workout, but I recommend that my clients always commit to 45 minutes daily. Whether an intense workout or as basic as a walk, moving your body regardless of the weather is essential.
It is essential to warm up and cool down before and after your workouts. For warm-ups, I usually do activation exercises – these exercises are based on the muscles/muscle groups I will be focusing on throughout the workout. The first set should use body weight, bands, holds, and pulses to activate the muscles I am about to use further. My favourite way to end the workout is with a light cardio piece to cool down, and this could be a five-minute walk alongside a nice whole-body stretch.
If you liked this article, you might like another of our features about finding wintertime exercise motivation, this time by our own fitness queen, Kristina Roach!