Study: Don’t Take a Winter Break from Exercise.

Winter isn't a time for fitness hibernation.

It’s winter. The days are shorter, darker and colder. When it comes to exercising and working out, hibernation may seem like a tempting alternative.

But not so fast: Research shows that adults who work out consistently have significantly lower levels of depression. Moreover, pounds gained from gym hiatuses are very difficult to shed – even after you start exercising again.

When it comes to exercise, consistency is extremely important to achieve your fitness goals. It’s not about exercising for two months and then taking one month off; exercise is a lifetime commitment. But regular and consistent exercise is also important to experience the many other benefits of exercise – like improved sleep, increased energy, weight control and better moods.

To determine the impact of exercise regularity on depression, a 2010 study followed nearly 200 individuals for 2 years. Participants were put into two distinct groups of regular and irregular exercisers. Based on the findings, researchers found a significantly lower level of depression in regular exercisers – and thus concluded that consistent exercise is fundamental for improving mental health.

In another study, researchers studied weight gained during breaks from regular exercise. It’s no surprise that reducing physical activity can result in weight gain – but can that weight be lost by resuming exercise? According to the study, not easily. Weight gained because of reductions in weekly exercise in men and women “may not be reversed by resuming prior activity.” In other words, the weight gained during exercise breaks tends to be stubborn – and it isn’t lost by resuming your same workout a few months later.

The days are short and cold, and our schedules are busier than ever – but, to truly enjoy the many benefits of exercise, consistency is key. Keep honoring your body with the movement it craves. A day isn’t a day unless you’ve broken a sweat.

About Davey Wavey

Davey Wavey is a certified personal trainer and YouTube sensation with more than 250 million video views. For Davey's fitness tips and secrets, sign up for his free monthly newsletter - or download any of his affordable and effective workout programs.

Comments

  1. actly, since the equinox back in december, the days have been getting longer.. js..

  2. This is great advice, but being a considerate individual having had the flu, I don’t want to be giving something extra to someone when I give them the dumb-bells I was just using.

    What do you recommend for exercise while you’ve got the flu? (especially if it knocks you down for a week?)

  3. christopher says:

    ive done considerable reading on this subject-working out DOES eliminate or reduce depression.people near me dont understand that-but i have firsthand experience-even my doctor backs me up on this.and its true-try it.

  4. Or as Elle Woods says:

    “Exercise gives you endorphins and endorphins make you happy and happy people just don’t go around killing their husbands”