The Power of a Cold Water Swim
It may still be cold outside, but that is no excuse to stay indoors and be lazy. Winter and autumn are the perfect seasons to focus on your health and fitness, and you should use this period to set fitness goals for the year.
If you are tired of layering up to go sweat it out at the gym, then you should try cold-water swimming to shock your system and train new muscles. Cold water swimming is not just excellent exercise, it also has benefits for your overall physical and mental health. So why not throw on your long-sleeved Cover Swim suit, and head out into the cold?
Here are 5 reasons why taking a plunge into cold UK water will be beneficial to you.
1) Improve your blood circulation
When swimming in cold water, your body will force blood to your limbs and to the surface of your skin in an attempt to warm your extremities and keep the cold out. This movement of blood through the body helps flush out your veins, arteries and capillaries, and will improve your overall blood circulation.
2) Get mental clarity and reduce stress
Taking a dip in cold water will help you step away from the craziness of everyday life. Taking a dip in the sea or one of the UK’s many beautiful lakes, surrounded by nature, will help you escape the chaos of your life, if only for a few minutes each day.
Spending time in nature will help reduce stress levels and can help with symptoms of depression and anxiety.
3) Improve your fitness
Pushing yourself to train in tough conditions will force your body to adapt quickly. Swimming in cold water may make breathing more difficult, and your body will have to adapt to store and utilize the available oxygen. Your body will also be working harder to keep you warm, and if swimming in the ocean, you may be pushing against currents. Cold water swimming will therefore improve your overall fitness.
4) Boost your health
If you expose your self to nature in winter, you will be exposed to more bacteria and viruses. This is not necessarily a bad thing (as long as you can warm up after the swim!) and will improve your immune system.
If we get a bit more technical – immersion in cold water increases the levels of glutathione (an important antioxidant) in your body, which will help reduce the risk of heart disease or cancer.
5) Socialise and make friends
Look online or in social media for a local cold-water swimming club, and join up! There is a certain sense of camaraderie between cold water swimmers, since they are all in it together, and you are guaranteed to make some friends while dipping your toes in the cold water.
After the swim, the club may all enjoy a warm cup of coffee, which is the perfect place to socialise and make friends with people in the area.
It may be tough to get started, but many cold-water swimmers have reported a natural high and claimed that cold water swimming can be addictive since it makes you feel so great!
Cold water swimming holds so many emotional, physical and social benefits, so it is tough to see why you shouldn't try it, at least once. Who knows, you may make some friends and get fit in the process.