As the clocks go back and the weather seems to be heading to winter, you might start thinking more about indoor-based sessions in a nice warm gym!
Winter is a great time to get in the gym and work on strengthening your muscles, building a resilient and robust body and getting your core strong (its not the only time though! Strength work should be year round, but that’s for another blog!). A structured strength program can increase your flexibility, strength, power, stability and balance. As a result you’ll be less likely to get injured when the demands you place on your body increase as training intensity rises in the new year. In addition you’ll find it easier to hold correct form for longer, so you’ll be able to train better, for longer – win!
We thought we’d list a few of our favourite gym exercises and pieces of kit to give you some ideas. If you have any questions about any of the below or want more information just ask.
TRX – great bit of kit, and you can get your own one for use at home/on your travels. Great for rows, hamstring curls, single leg squats and core exercises.
Resistance bands – again you can buy these for use at home, and they aren’t too expensive. Great for activation exercises and developing good alignment in your movements. Also a great assistance tool for progressing to full pull ups.
Box jumps – try doing these superset with squats to develop strength and power. Or use them for step ups. Most gyms have plyo boxes now in a range of heights so you can progress from a starting low level box.
Squats – Kat’s favourite exercise!
Deadlifts – Kat’s second favourite exercise!
Push ups, pull ups and dips to work all those swim muscles.
Core stabilizing workouts – not just sit ups! By core you need to think about everything between your hips/pelvis and your rib cage. A strong stable core will really help increase the efficiency of power transfer and improve your balance. For example you can do glute bridges, single leg squats, planks, human flags, and any free weight/dumbbell work will require you to switch on your core too.
These are just some ideas for what you could think about adding into your winter training routine, however you need to make sure it’s a structured, progressive strength training program to benefit from it. If you don’t know where to start or have been making up the number of reps and sets you do each time you go the gym then get in touch to discuss what you should be doing over winter and for the rest of the year and next time go armed with the correct workout for that phase of your training cycle.