The closure of the gyms in Lockdown 3.0 is a real kicker for many of us who do the majority of our working out indoors in the winter months.
Heading out for a run on a cold, dark and wet night might not be all that appealing, right?
But fear not. Outdoor workouts don’t have to be as grim as they sound. Here are 4 top tips from a personal trainer on keeping your fitness levels up in a January and February lockdown.
Mix Up Your Workouts
This is great advice under any circumstances. But particularly for you gym bunnies whose workouts have had to shift outside, variety will be really important to keep it interesting and to keep your motivated enough to continue even with the dreary weather the the longer, darker nights.
So plan your workout schedule so you’re doing something a bit different each time.
Dress for the (Dreary) Weather and the Dark Nights
Your workout will definitely be dampened if your clothes get wet and you end up with cold, wet skin. Prepare for what the UK often throws at us in the winter months – wet and cold weather. Base layers will help trap the heat in on particularly cold nights while a waterproof running jacket or outer layer will keep you dry if it starts pouring down.
If you’re doing your workouts from later afternoon onwards, do get reflectors or a jacket with reflectors on to make yourself visible to any traffic. It’s a really basic but hugely important safety measure.
Head out with a Buddy or Your Trainer
During the UK’s third lockdown you can meet up with one person from another household outside. I always find my clients are much more motivated when working out with me (as their trainer) or even working out with a friend. Having someone to keep you going when you feel like quitting is even more important when the weather might be putting you off and you would much rather be in the gym!
Motivation will be everything this lockdown.
Get Your Hands on a Set of Resistance Bands
It might not be practical to lug a set of dumb bells with you when you head out to work out. But a set of resistance bands is a brilliant and portable alternative.
Trying to get hold of home fitness equipment is like trying to get a direct dial for Santa right now. Lockdown has presented stock shortages of things like dumb bells. But at the time of writing, there are a few resistance band sets available on Amazon:
Exercises you can do with a set of resistance bands include:
- Resistance band shoulder press
- Lateral walk
- Resistance band chest press
In addition to your regular workouts, even getting out for a walk with your family can be a good way to get your heart pumping. And while lockdown outdoor workouts are unlikely to be a preferred option for all of us, you might even start enjoying exercising in the great (damp, dark, winter) outdoors.