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HIBERNATING THIS WINTER?

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The days are shorter and colder these days. The foods on the plate are getting larger and the sleeps are longer with very less physical activities. This is a human hibernation during the cold weather. Some animals do hibernate during the winter for survival. They definitely won’t have any fitness goals during winter that’s why they go into hibernation responding to the light and temperature cues, which studies have shown that bears are compelled by these cues, to store 50 percent of their weight as fats in preparation of long, cold nights of winter.

But why should we hibernate in winter as long as we can have fitness goals? Even though the long nights of winter have physiological effects on our body, we can train our mind to stay motivated in any sort of weather conditions. Researches have shown that a lack of hormone melatonin, which is produced during the daylight that makes us sluggish during winter. And this is also the time for us Nepalese to load lots of fats in our diet, as “MoMo & Mutton Curry” will be the favorite dishes all over this winter along with ghee spread over cooked rice and legumes. It’s going to be easier to put a couple of kilos and all of us know this fact.

Without any exercises and diet inspectors during winter, our physique may change in weight and shape within these 2-3 months time. We’ll bury ourselves in thicker and warmer wearing concealing our physique. Most of us stop working out during winter due to the reason that we can’t exhibit our physique like in summer at all. Ignoring the body this way can change in physique in a different manner during winter. When the spring follows, we start stripping off the thicker clothes standing in front of a mirror, holding a line of thick fats on one hand i.e. hanging on the bottom line of our belly, feeling embarrassed within, “I shouldn’t have stopped working out this winter”.  We have to put extra effort to bring back the shape that we had before winter coz we have to shred off the shape that we created during winter. Now our fitness regimen starts from the ground zero again. How many of us want this? Well, no one wants this changes in physique as the winter ends.

It is always wise to stay motivated during the winter season and bringing ourselves in the gym or outdoor engaging into some physical trainings. It is also great to workout during wintertime as the temperature is lower and we don’t need to worry about getting too hot. Our body burns more calories in the colder climate to maintain the core temperature of our body, where we can draw this to burn more calories with our regular training that will result us amazingly great shape when summer comes around.

There are few things that might motivate us for training during colder seasons.

Set Short & Realistic Goals:
Setting up small but realistic goals for a short period of time may boost our motivation up. For instance, “I’ll like to run 6 kilometers tonight on a treadmill”, “I like to superset chest and triceps this morning to make my workout short and intense” or “I’ll lose 1 kg in one week.” When we have small goals for a day or a week, we’ll always work hard to accomplish them.

Find a Partner:
Finding a right partner for our training is always great to motivate each other to go for an extra mile, extra Rep or 5kgs more. When we feel to off sometimes, we’ll push ourselves to go for our training partners.

Select Great Music:
Listening to the music that always makes us groove gives us a warm up feeling within our minds. We scan our favorite playlist while we are driving towards the gym or listening to the iPods while walking, jogging or running will always prepare us for a great workout.

Proper Attire:
Moving out of the house is firstly challenging because of chilling breeze outside may switch us off from going further. So, wearing a warm (not thick and big jackets) sports jumpers or windproof suits may protect us from the first cold wind and keep us warm throughout our training session. We might take off the jumpers if we feel hot and wear it back again later.

Warm Up:
Warming up before any workout is always important despite of any seasons. It might take us a bit longer to warm up our body during winter than in summer. We can always jog, run, skip, rowing or cycling for 10-15 minutes following with some stretching make us ready to kick off our workout.

Drink Water:
Most of us don’t drink much water during winter. Even though we don’t sweat that often during winter, we have to drink plenty of water to prevent our body from dehydration.

Stay Focus:
We have to focus on our long-term fitness goals even though we set small goals to motivate ourselves for keep going during winter. This will help us in achieving our goals, goals to look fit, trimmed, slim or shredded throughout the summer. Winter again follows after summer, this is the cycle of nature and we have to cycle our fitness goals according to nature eventually making it our lifestyle. Ultimately, hibernating during winter will hinder our fitness goals, so, wake up and hit the road of fitness.

SANJEET K SHRESTHA

REGISTERED EXERCISE PROFESSIONAL

NATIONAL BODYBUILDING JUDGE-NEPAL

Note: Article published in +977 Magazine, Sydney, Australia