Brrrr! It’s cold outside! Despite the coldness of winter, it is important to stay active. There are many fun winter sports that you can participate in that are beneficial for your body as well. This winter, my husband, Joe; my son, Ethan; and I have been enjoying lots of outdoor sports. Some of our favourites include snowshoeing, skating, and skiing. I don’t downhill ski, but I love cross country skiing. Joe and Ethan love both downhill and cross country skiing. We also winter hike at some of the local parks and conservation areas around us.
What winter sports do you enjoy? Here are the potential benefits to your body!
|Snow-shoeing||544||Abs, thighs, calves|
|Cross-country||510||Shoulders, arms, thighs|
|Downhill Skiing||374||Abs, thighs, butt|
When participating in winter sports, it is still important to stay hydrated. There is a common misconception that water requirements go down in the winter; however, they actually remain the same or may even go up for some people. During the winter you still sweat, breathe, and urinate, etc. Also, the heat in our homes is drying for our body. I know it is uncomfortable to drink cold drinks in the winter when you’re cold, so a great tip that I learned was to warm my water and drink it like a tea. When I speak of water, I mean pure, clean water. If you add anything else to it, your body no longer sees it as water. You can squeeze fresh lemon into your water and still call it water.
Here’s a fun challenge for you to see if you can get in your minimum water each day.
The formula that I like to use as it determines water on an individual basis follows. I believe that we are all individuals and so each person’s body requirements are different. I do not believe in cookie cutter solutions.
Body weight in pounds / 2 = ounces of water per day / 8 = number of glasses of water per day.
Eg. Here’s an easy math example for you. 160 lbs / 2 = 80 ounces of water / 8 = 10 glasses of water per day.
Of course this is minimum and only prevents dehydration so a person really needs to consume more. We also need to take into account how active we are. If you are feeling thirsty, you are already dehydrated.
I often hear that it is challenging to figure out whether you have consumed your water for the day or not. Here are a couple of simple hacks to assist you in getting your daily water requirements. When I used to work in an office environment, I would bring a 4L water of bottle with me each day to work. This way I knew that I needed to consume that much water before I went to bed each night. Yes, I drink 4L of water each day. The other way that you can ensure that you are getting your water in each day is to get a 500 ML water bottle or even a 1L water bottle, figure out how many glasses of water you need, and then calculate how many bottles of water that equals. There are 2 cups of water in a 500 ML water bottle which equals about 2 glasses of water. So, if you want to get in 10 glasses of water, you need to consume 5 of these 500 ML bottles. Place 5 elastics on your water bottle and remove one each time that you drink the bottle of water. Once all the elastics are gone, you are done your water for the day. Again, this example is a minimum water consumption for a 160 pound person.
Nutrition is key for sports performance and recovery. Just before exercising and while exercising, it is important to consume a drink rich in carbohydrates and vitamins which allows you to have a better workout since it provides your muscles with the energy they need to perform well. A sports drink is especially great for this purpose; however, a lot of the commercially available sports drinks contain ingredients that we don’t want such as artificial colours, artificial flavours, and artificial sweeteners. The Hydrate sports drink that I support contains all natural ingredients along with vitamins to support superior training.
Within 45 minutes of working out, it is important to consume quality carbohydrates and protein, preferably in a liquid form, to begin the repair process of your muscles. A liquid drink that works well right after your exercise is a protein shake which contains quality whey protein combined with the proper ratio of quality carbohydrates, and quality fat. Quality whey protein needs to be undenatured and properly processed to ensure that it contains all the branched-chain amino acids that your muscles need. Our muscles are built in the kitchen as opposed to the gym. When we work out, we are tearing and breaking down the muscles, which is a good thing as it makes them stronger. The fuel that we put into our body is what builds and repairs those muscles. It is 80% nutrition and only 20% exercise that builds a healthy and fit body.
The time until your next workout is when you want to refuel your muscles to be able to perform well for your next workout. This is when it is important to consume high quality protein, carbohydrates, and fats. Here we can utilize low carbohydrate eating and carbohydrate cycling where we consume low carbohydrate meals on some days and higher carbohydrate meals on other days.
Not only does exercise contribute to muscle development, but it also promotes bone and joint health, improved posture and an increased ability to withstand physical and other stresses. It is important to manage stress in your life as it causes fat storage as well as low energy, insomnia, diminished sex drive, etc. Exercise is a form of meditation which assists with stress reduction and adds years to your life.
Even something as simple as walking is so beneficial for your body. It is doesn’t require equipment except for a good pair of walking shoes and really works the body well. If you are unable to get outside and exercise during the winter due to injuries, some other great forms of exercise include swimming, cycling (which is especially good for knee joints), and water aerobics.
If you’ve found this article beneficial or would like more information, I welcome you to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or text or call 613-540-4515. I would love to work with you to develop your unique path for healing!