The shortest day of the year is just around the corner. There will be eight hours forty-nine minutes less daylight on Wednesday 21st December than on the summer solstice.
These shorter days (less than eight hours of daylight during virtually all of December) and darker evenings are also often cold and wet, or just depressingly grey. So it’s hardly surprising that we are tempted to snuggle up and stay indoors, eating comfort foods and being less active. Even though we know that this centrally heated, electrically lit, stuffy environment is absolutely no good for us.
Whilst Nordic walking may seem to be most enjoyable during the summer months, the time we need it most is during the winter. This is especially important if you experience the ‘winter blues’ or the more debilitating Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). You do not have to wait for winter to pass to start feeling better. Exercising outdoors during daylight hours is about the very best health gift you can possibly give yourself and here’s why:
- Exercising releases endorphins which can boost your mood, lower stress and help improve sleep, it will also make you feel more energetic. All of which encourages a clearer and more positive attitude.
- Exercising improves your circulation, especially Nordic walking when you’re active with your hands and feet which warms you up and helps your body’s systems to function more efficiently.
- Exercising will help you manage your weight better and keep your body in shape, which is particularly helpful if (like me) you are tempted to eat more during the winter months.
- Moderate exercise like Nordic walking strengthens your immune system so you will be less likely to catch those coughs and colds and other bugs. If you do catch them your body is better able to fight them off.
- Getting outdoors during daylight hours encourages the brain to produce the chemicals serotonin and melatonin improving mood, appetite and sleep. This is hugely important and a one hour Nordic walk will make a big difference.
- Getting outside and away from a stuffy and centrally heated environment will be a breath of fresh air for your lungs, clear your head and remind you how revitalising and energising it is to be active and outdoors in our wonderful city.
Feeling enthused? Here’s the link to our bookings page.
Your survey testimonials are inspiring
Thank you, thank you to everyone who has filled in our Nordic walking survey - your input is crucial to help us develop. You make the club and our NW community what it is. Below are just a few of your testimonials, I would like to have printed them all but I haven’t the space! Suffice to say the constant theme is one of fitness, fun and friendship in the great outdoors. Tis enough to warm the cockles of one’s heart…
“It's wonderful to have found an exercise that I can do for the rest of my life that has provided so many benefits and also a fabulous set of new friends. My upper body strength is no longer in decline, my arms are fit to be on view, resting pulse nice & low and stamina vastly improved.”
“Me and my dog think this is the best thing that has happened to us. Exercise in the fresh air, talking to people with get up and go plus the most delightful yet varied walk leaders. This is the perfect antidote to those mean PE teachers of the 60s who made us run around in fluffy green knickers while enjoying watching me be the last to be picked for any team. Well just clock me now with the best attitude ever. I just LOVE Bristol Nordic Walking. “
"Nordic walking has given me a new and very accessible form of exercise which continues to test me physically at the same time as providing me with wonderful social and emotional support. Fresh air and rigorous exercise makes me feel good. Since I've started N.W. I feel now, that I can take control of both my physical and mental wellbeing. I feel empowered!"
"It has seriously altered my life! I was never a 'fitness' person (more theatre/arts).. but I now walk twice a week and the style of walking (using 90% of the body), the fresh air (good for mental health) & the company as well as the lovely instructors make it the perfect combination. Haven't been so fit since my teenage years so thank you! Also it's fun!"
"Whenever I have walked I always felt invigorated. The tuition and support are inspiring and amazing. Since I started 3 years ago after prolonged inactivity (11 years following a severe accident), I have regained my fitness again. It has given me back my life. It is never to late to take up Nordic Walking. And all other 'co-walkers' are an inspiration and joy to be with."
"Outstanding club - friendly and welcoming. The only form of fitness I've stuck at for more than a few weeks (currently 7 months and counting), and with excellent results (lost 1 stone and 5" from my waistline and much fitter overall). Walks are always enjoyable and social with a great bunch of people!"
If you haven’t yet completed our survey there’s still time - just click here. We'll let you know the results in January.