It’s starting to get frosty outside, and it’s likely you’ll just want to hide under the covers and ditch your morning session for an extra sleep in.
You’re not alone.
Chances are that your completion rate is going to slip a little over winter but if you can maintain consistency now, there’s a huge payoff in September when you can power into your Spring training, rather than having to restart.
Best tips for training through winter
Here’s a few tips to make that happen:
Layer Up. Take the chance to hit the shops for some new training gear. Start with a base layer of compression, then layer progressively warmers layers on top. As you start training your metabolic heat production will begin keeping you warm and you can shed layers. Unless you’re doing a low intensity session (or just a cold frog) avoid base layer thermals because it’s hard to take them off once your session gets going.
Prepare Early. Get your training gear out the night before so there is one less excuse to stay under the doona. If you’re not training first thing in the morning, pack your gym bag the night before so it’s all ready to go.
Warm Up. Although there is technically no increase in injury risk in colder weather, it just doesn’t feel great to go from cold and stiff to all out efforts. Take the time to warm up into your session with prep drills or lighter lifts, focusing on getting full range through your joints before you progress to heavier loads or faster sprint efforts.
Trim The Fat. Plan your sessions in advance and cut out the superfluous stuff. Head into your session with the mindset of completing just 3-4 segments of work, not a 90 minute gym spectacular. A segment might be 5 sets on your key lift, a circuit or an interval set on the bike. The more you have programmed the greater the resistance will be to actually get out of bed in the first place. Keep it simple and you’ll get more done in the long run.
And for the major payoff?
As you take these actions and chalk up your winter sessions, the psychological benefits are vast. You build up greater resilience, grit, determination, discipline, will power… or whatever you choose to call it!
And just imagine what that can do for your spring training.
Enjoy your winter!
Trav is a Physiotherapist with an Exercise Science background who specialises in shoulder injuries and gym-based rehab. He believes that injury rehab is an opportunity to work on performance and to emerge better than before you were injured.