Many of the clients here have been coming in with the complaint of the single digit temps. This shouldn't really be a surprise to those from the northeast, if it is well welcome to New England folks. Hell Orono use to be so cold we had to stop in other buildings to warm up on the way to class. I'm not kidding, many times I made sure I had an extra 10-15 minutes to stop on the way to class in the morning...or I drove because I didn't feel like doing such foolishness.
To my point, exercising in the cold can cause problems, most of the soft tissue variety, pulls, tweaks and ohshitwhatwasthats. Yes you can even experience problems inside because trust me when it's this cold, unless you are cranking the heat to the point where you can walk around naked and still sweat, you will still get chilly now and again. Today I've decided to share a few helpful hints to keep you together when training in these Arctic like temps.
-Warm Up (No Seriously Do It): Ok so I know there are definitely a high number of you that barely take the time to warm up, IF you take the time to do so. Even those that know you should warm up before all lifts, skip some of the things that suck most, or don't do all the reps. Temps like this are cause to make sure you finish your warm up and if you still don't feel warm, add a little to it. Whether it's doing another set or reps or just simply some of those silly calisthenics like jumping jacks, as foolish as they are, be sure the body is warm and the blood is flowing at it's best.
-Layer Up: Sorry boys but these are probably not the optimal days to be tearing off the shirt and showing everyone how trim you are (or not so much) and ladies as much as the guys do enjoy the view with the little outfits you wear, same applies to you. The days it's not so toasty are the days to come in wearing an old sweatshirt and workout pants, bring them with you at the very least. The time between sets can be bad news if you don't take the precautions to keep warm. Hammerheads that wear the knee sleeves got it right here, cold joints are not so happy joints, keep yourself warm throughout your workout. A winter hat inside might look a little foolish but it's a good idea nonetheless, ok horse beaten.
-Extra Warm Up Sets: Not going to get into the whole how many sets before working sets and yada so forth. It's been said better than I can say it at this time so I'll let those that can say it do so. This tip also kind of goes with the first one but it's worth mentioning in it's own breath. Before you get into the working sets, especially if you are doing sets of 90% of your max or more, aka lifting heavy shit, then take the time to do your warm up sets and maybe do an extra one. With the warm up weight light enough it will not kill you I promise, take the time for your own sake.
-Get indoors: Seriously if you are one of those crazies I saw running this morning when it was a whopping tre (3) outside then you might need to be committed. For those that are the runners outside take it inside if you have a gym membership, yes I hate the damn treadmill too but you'll be fine for a day or two, especially if you recently joined the ranks of the runners in the north from a much warmer climate, your blood is probably not that thick yet. Those of you that MUST run, cut it down today, today is probably not your best day to be going for that 20+ mile run. Also the 2nd tip applies to you 10 fold, layer up and be warm rather than freeze, pants and legging are a damn good idea today.
That's all I got for today folks, go out there, stay warm, and get the hell after it!