When the temperatures turn cold, the last thing you probably want to do is leave your couch to work out. But that's exactly what you should do to help your body and mind function at their best. Exercise is undoubtedly one of the best ways to beat the winter blues. Don't believe us? Here's how using your home fitness equipment, heading to your local gym, or heading outside for some physical activity can help you feel better all season long.
You'll have more energy to spare Once winter rolls around, the daylight hours start to dwindle. That alone can make it difficult to leave your warm bed in the morning or feel productive past 4 pm. But if you've made a commitment to fitness this winter, you'll probably find that you have tons more energy than usual. You'll likely sleep better at night and wake feeling more rested and ready to tackle the day. Instead of turning to sugar and caffeine during your daily slump, you can turn to your home fitness equipment for a natural energy boost. That'll definitely come in handy when the holidays roll around or when every member of the family has a different schedule to keep track of. You may even find you're able to cut down on your multiple cups of coffee as a result!
You'll stay warm Around 53% of U.S. adults over the age of 18 meet the aerobic physical activity guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But if a higher percentage of us decided to get moving, we'd probably stay a lot warmer on these cold winter days. When you use gym equipment or go for a run, you'll get your blood pumping and will work up a sweat. That can eliminate the need to crank up the heat as high when you're at home, which could ultimately save you quite a bit on energy bills. You might also not to supplement with sugary hot drinks or warm, fattening foods as often to stay toasty. Plus, you'll probably just be in a better mood when you aren't freezing your little toes off.
You'll work off holiday eating Speaking of sugar and fat... there's a lot of it that pops up during this time of year. While some of it is unavoidable to a certain extent, you can feel a lot better about your eating habits when you're staying active. Of course, working out at the gym or at home doesn't mean you should throw all caution to the wind. But it does mean that you're in the process of making healthy habits that can allow you to adopt "everything in moderation" as your mantra. If you've already started working out regularly, you may even find that you don't want to fill up on treats quite as much as you used to -- simply because you're more aware of the hard work required to burn off the calories. Wouldn't it be great if you actually improved your health over the holidays?
You can combat seasonal depression If you have seasonal affective disorder or you tend to feel blue around this time of year, winter can pack an emotional wallop. But one of the most effective ways to gain control of your mental health is through physical activity. If you use your home fitness equipment at least a few times a week, you'll release hormones that can help alleviate stress and anxiety and will make you feel a lot more positive. You may not look forward to your workout, but we bet you'll love how you feel after the endorphin rush!
You'll boost your immune system Maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine can amp up your immune system and avoid illnesses. Studies have actually found that moderate exercise can allow the body to fight off colds more efficiently. There's nothing worse than being sick in bed or trying to get through work when you feel miserable. But if you devote yourself to using your home fitness equipment regularly, get ample sleep, and eat nutrient-rich foods, you'll be in the pink of health for the foreseeable future.