Winter Swimming: What’s So Good About It?
People would stare at you like you were crazy if you even gave the slightest suggestion of swimming in the cold winter months. Think about how winter swimming would be like when water takes heat from the body 30 times faster than air! Could it even be possible or would the person just end up with hypothermia?
Actually, winter swimming is considered an extreme but exciting sport by some. But before you judge winter swimmers to be crazy, they already had some training even before the start of the frigid season to acclimate or “harden” their bodies. Thus, if you’re thinking about simply jumping into the Atlantic Ocean in January without necessary preparations, yes, you can die.
How to Prepare for Winter Swimming
Consult with your doctor first to ensure that your heart is in good condition enough to endure the strain when swimming in freezing waters. Once you get the green light, begin your physical training to harden your body. Start small by taking cold showers or going night swimming in an unheated pool during the summer.
As the temperature cools down further, the longer you should stay swimming. When the water temperature is below 32F, spend no more than 20 minutes swimming depending on your abilities. Remember that cold water can kill you so you have to be a strong swimmer to do this length of time.
The most important thing to remember is to know your body’s limits. You can’t beat Mother Nature so swallow the pill and know when to stop. Yes, you have to show toughness and strength to accomplish this extreme sport, but modesty is also a huge part of your success.
Benefits of Winter Swimming
Studies show that swimming in cold water can boost your immune system due to the significant increases in white blood cell counts in the body. You must have heard of people getting that “high” feeling after getting out of cold water. That’s actually true, thanks to endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. So if you want to feel good, jump in.
Feel your blood pumping as the cold triggers the heart to pump better and faster. That extra flow of blood exfoliates your skin and releases impurities. You’ll get that natural glow after the swim. Besides looking youthful, swimming in cold water burns calories faster than warm water. That’s because your body works doubly hard to keep you warm, burning more calories in the process.
So if you want to add winter swimming to your list of extreme sports, stay at a winter rental in North Myrtle Beach and get close to the ocean. You’ll have a great time traveling, and at the same time, stay healthy. Win-win!