Winter wellness tips

2016-06-28 06:00

WINTER proves to be the most challenging time of the year when it comes to staying healthy and fit. As the days grow shorter and the nights grow longer, we find ourselves easing up on our commitments. We would rather be covered in blankets than covered in sweat; we would rather be heating up carbs than burning up calories. So how do we combat and counter our slacking and prevent post-winter aftershock?

The first step in being healthy starts with a good, balanced diet. But if you find yourself with an excessive craving for carbs and fatty foods during the winter months, don’t be alarmed. Many of us have had to deal with that extra little layer of fat around our bellies come September because of our increased appetites in winter. Craving carbohydrates like pastas and pastries is normal during winter. However, you can satisfy your cravings in a healthy way.
The second step is to continue exercising when you don’t feel like it.
Here are easy things you can do to remain healthy and fit during winter:

When deciding to carb it up, rather choose the healthier option

“Good carbs” as we know ’em are high in fibre and takes longer to digest. Because of this, you feel fuller for longer – and this is excellent for weight control. Instead of stuffing your face with chocolate doughnuts, rather try low-carb chocolate zucchini brownies.

• Don’t neglect your water intake
The winter cold prompts us to hot drinks like teas, coffees and hot chocolate, and we may shiver at the thought of drinking eight glasses of pure water a day. Although there’s nothing wrong with indulging in some warm liquid love, you shouldn’t neglect your 100% water intake. Water not only regulates our body temperature, but it helps with detoxifying our bodies and transporting nutrients and oxygen.

• Check your gym membership
If you have to drive 45 minutes to get to the gym every day, chances are that you’ll more often than not feel “very tired” or you might just find that there’s a whole load of washing that you “forgot” to do. Rather find a club that’s convenient for you. Check your membership and consider upgrading to super-club which allows you to attend any of the clubs near you. This definitely makes popping out to exercise so much easier and eliminates all other excuses.

• Change your daily routine
Many of us give winter mornings the cold shoulder, especially when it means getting up to exercise. Exercising in the late afternoon doesn’t just beat getting up early, but it has been proven to combat fatigue and to help improve sleeping patterns. Rather than completely staying away, consider going to the gym after work as opposed to early in the morning. Perhaps even try a simple and short workout at your gym. This is a functional training class that aims to enhance your endurance, posture and muscle strength and all this is done in only 30 minutes. It’s the perfect workout for when you’re in a rush to get back under the covers.

• Get a gym buddy
Finding a gym buddy will do wonders for your level of commitment. You’ll be able to encourage and motivate each other to keep going. Find someone who is available the times that you have open and who are more or less into the same kinds of exercises that you are into. - Supplied.

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