Working up a sweat in adverse weather conditions can be a drag. No one wants to put in miles of road running when it’s pouring with rain and taking your bike for a spin in the snow could result in a crash.
Instead, adapt your exercise regime to work with the weather. This will help you avoid conditions like heat stroke and will keep your motivation high during the colder, wetter winter months.
If you do decide to lace up your running shoes during a downpour, be sure to make a few sensible accommodations to keep you safe and reasonably dry throughout.
Exercise equipment is a huge industry for a reason. You really do need the right gear for the occasion if you want to workout come rain, shine, snow, or heat. Buying the right gear for the season needn’t break your bank, though. You can dress appropriately for outdoor exercise in each season:
- Spring: Wear breathable fabrics that layer on top of each other. This will help you adjust to sudden changes in temperature and will keep you dry should you suddenly experience a springtime downpour.
- Summer: Lightweight fabrics are king when exercising in the heat. Opt for vented shirts where possible and hats that will protect your face from UV rays. Consider wearing white, light, long-sleeved shirts if you’re outside during the hottest part of the day, as this will reflect the heat and reduce the risk of sunburn.
- Fall: Crew sweaters are perfect for outdoor exercise in the cooler fall months. Consider pairing them with a base layer to keep your core warm and remember to pack reflective gear when the clocks go back.
- Winter: Pick up some insulated gear that will keep the winter chills away and bring an extra pair of clothes with you. This will give you something to change when you finally get back to your car after a long bike ride or a grueling hike.
You don’t need to buy branded exercise equipment to keep safe and comfortable throughout the year. Instead, opt for fabrics that are suitably insulated and/or breathable. If you’re looking for rain-proof wear, consider pushing the boat out a little and pick up a product that utilizes gore-tex to keep you dry year-round.
When the winter months roll in, even the thought of visiting the gym can become unappealing — particularly if you lead a busy work life. Rather than skipping your workouts, consider putting together a home gym to see you through when the days grow short and your motivation starts to wane.
Finding a place to work from home is easy, too. You can turn your garage into a gym by decluttering your outdoor area and putting together a floor plan. This will give you a reference point when you’re thinking about bringing in new equipment. If you enjoy resistance training with weights, you should install some rubber flooring and insulation to avoid damage and keep you warm when the weather turns.
Start with budget-friendly home exercise equipment like pull-up bars and adjustable dumbbells. These are relatively cost-effective and can help you form a habit of working out in your garage. When you’ve saved up some extra cash, consider a barbell, squat rack, and a few rubber plates. These will open up a wide range of workouts and help you sustain your fitness goals throughout all the seasons.
A cold snap can interfere with your fitness plans and leave you lacking motivation to go out and exercise. This is entirely understandable, as a lack of exposure to sunlight can result in Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD can sap your energy, interfere with your recovery, and cause a loss of interest in fitness-related hobbies.
Learn to manage your symptoms and sustain your fitness goals by making a few lifestyle changes in winter. Make sure you get outside on sunny days — even five minutes in the garden can make a world of difference. Eat seasonal foods to keep colds and flu away and drink plenty of fluids.
Remember to get adequate rest in the winter months, too. You don’t want to overstress your body when bugs are going around and poor recovery can compromise your immune system. Rather than starting a screen late into the night, consider picking up a cozy winter habit like knitting or reading that is easy on your body and helps you drift off when your bedtime rolls around.
Sustaining your fitness goals year-round takes planning, preparation, and dedication. Get things started in the right direction by finding the right exercise equipment and clothing for the season. This will serve you well when conditions intensify and can help you rediscover your passion for road running when the cold winter nights draw in.
Consider investing some cash into a home gym, too, as a home gym will minimize the risk of skipping workouts and failing to reach your fitness goals.