Training in the snow seems crazy to you? Read our reasons why we love snow training
For a few days a year Muddy Plimsolls turns into Snowy Plimsolls. But that changes nothing about the brilliance of exercising outdoors. We’ve listed below the best reasons to get out and exercise when it snows.
A sense of achievement
Committing to an outdoor training programme as the weather turns colder, requires a little toughness, discipline and endurance. Consequently, you’ll feel a positive sense of achievement.
Here’s our client, Juliey, battling the falling snow for some half-pushups on a suspension trainer. It’s true that, strictly speaking this exercise is not made any more challenging by the snow, per se. But, hey, the cold certainly didn’t help and neither did the snowflakes that were falling down the back of her neck.
Snow: strong stuff
Rolling giant snowballs, high-knee running across a snowy field, squats whilst holding a bag full of snow, icy squat thrusts. Frozen water makes for a tough training partner when used the right way.
A chance to dress up
Finally, a chance to properly bench-test those Icebreaker leggings or that ridiculously tight Under Armour top. Remember to dress appropriately for the weather and once you kick your heart rate up a notch, you’ll feel accustomed to the cold.
I advise my clients to use the layering principle: a breathable base layer of silk or thermal; an insulation layer for warmth; and an outer layer that’s windproof and water-repellent. My winter workout wardrobe essentials are a merino wool hat and chute (or neck gaiter). The chute is more practical than working out in a scarf, as it fits snugly round my neck – or for when it’s really cold – over my nose, which protects my throat from burning in the cold air.
Experiencing your local park in the snow
Exercising at this time of year, your local green space will be quieter than usual. You’ll be rewarded by views of the city few people take time to witness. Early morning, as the sun is rising you’ll be part of a silent, urban landscape under snowfall. It’s eerie and beautiful at the same time. The snow deadens sound and you can hear your own heavy breaths more clearly.
New games to play
We like to introduce an element of play to our training. When it’s been snowing, there’s the opportunity to play ‘dodge the snowball’: get hit by a (softly thrown) snowball and you get another set of push ups. It’s called incentive!