5 reasons why exercising in winter is crucial

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Winter is officially in full swing, and with it comes the usual malaise around exercise and committing to a regular fitness program. My eight barre studios slow right down in winter – less people come and the people who do, visit less often. It’s the natural winter lull. The temperature is cooler and it’s just so tempting to sleep in each morning and curl up on the couch with a blanket watching Netflix in the evenings.

It’s not a bad thing to take a break from exercise once in a while, and I know that a week of rest every so often does me wonders. I come back to my classes stronger as a result of the recovery and more committed than ever. However, this definitely does not apply to breaks of three or more months – yes, I’m talking to you. Instead of taking a break, why not commit to making this your fittest winter yet. If you need a little motivation, here are five reasons to get moving in the cooler months.

Exercise will warm you up
It’s already cold enough in winter so give your body a warmth boost each day by getting your heart rate up. It can be as simple as going outside for a brisk 10-minute walk. Layer up and you’ll be peeling clothes off before you know it.

Burn fat instead of storing it
For thousands of years our bodies have been programmed to store fat for winter in order to prepare for the famine ahead. Our metabolism slows down and insulin resistance increases. This was all well and good back then, but these days instead of a famine, what generally happens is that we eat more food, and of the heavier variety. There’s no winter famine in 2019, only delicious curries, hot chips and roast dinners. Combat this by eating well and moving more to speed up your metabolism and burn fat instead of storing it.

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Working out will keep you happy
Winter depression is definitely a thing. SAD (seasonal affective disorder), where one feels flat and depressed in the colder months, affects many people and can be a real drag. The exact cause isn’t known, but many scientists believe it is due to there being less sunlight hours in the autumn and winter months, which results in reduced melatonin and serotonin production. Exercise is a wonderful way to boost your happiness in winter as it produces endorphins – the “happy hormone” that triggers a positive feeling in the body.

Get a jump on your bikini body
If looking and feeling fit is a priority for you, don’t let yourself down over winter. Stay in shape with regular workouts so that you can breeze into spring in shape.

Look better in winter clothes
A healthy body looks (and feels) better in clothes. I promise you’ll feel better, look better, stay healthier and be happier. Working out over winter seems like a win to me.

Emma Seibold is the founder of Barre Body and Bende Byron Bay. Follow her on Instagram as @emmaseibold_.

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