Cold shower in the morning is the ultimate wake-up call and gives you 100% concentration for the day ahead. At the first thought of the cold shower, many get goosebumps just reading about it. Even if the cold Water While getting up right after the show may take some effort, you'll be more awake than ever before. That's a promise. Why this is so and what benefits the cold shower for your body brings with it, I explain to you today in detail.
Why the cold shower is so effective
Did you know that by natural cold training improve your sensitivity to cold and get sick less often? Especially in the winter months or in general when the weather changes a lot of people get tired very quickly and get headaches, circulation problems, and a cold. This is absolutely logical, because we have become quite wimps over time! 😉 Adjustable heating, hot water from the tap, thermal insulation and co. have only been around since the 20th century. Before that, extreme temperature differences were quite normal for our bodies. With targeted cold training, you can give your body back the resistance to cold that it should have by nature. Automatically, you will feel less cold when the cold months arrive. So today you'll also learn why you should do cold weather training, how your body reacts to cold weather, and how to put cold weather training into practice. And I'll introduce you to a man who has perfected cold weather training and no longer gets sick!
SINCE I TAKE COLD SHOWERS / DO COLD TRAINING:
... I am more confident and focused.
... even challenging or stressful situations during the day leave me cold.
... my skin appearance and hair structure have improved significantly.
... I'm in an even better mood than I already was.
But why is that? Taking a cold shower is a real challenge for us at first. If we master this first challenge of the day, we are already psychologically strengthened for other challenges. However, cold showers do not only have positive effects on our psyche, but also especially on our physique. Water plays an important role for our organism both internally and externally. Thus, the cold shower is enormously important for our hygiene and health. Of course, the majority follows the comfortable, lukewarm to warm way. But the majority always chooses the path of least resistance. Alternatively, if you find the cold shower really shear, you can slowly reduce the temperature and finish with a cold shower. No matter how you do it, here's what you'll find after your cold shower, and you may never want to take a hot shower again:
- Strengthened self-confidence: The cold shower gives you a testosterone boost, giving you more motivation and confidence for the day ahead. A confident appearance means more success. You are focused and feel more comfortable. In any situation.
- Against depression and stress: The cold water helps against depression and takes away stress that weighs you down. The cold shower will strengthen your immune system and make you more resistant to diseases. It will also improve your sleep.
- More beautiful skin and stronger hair: The cold shower stimulates blood circulation in your body. In addition, the cold water closes the pores of your skin and makes skin and hair more resistant to external influences such as heat or friction. Since your body wants to provide a temperature balance during the cold shower, the fat burning is also promoted.
- Better mood and more attention: You'll be thrilled at how a cold shower lifts your spirits and brings you that little bit closer to your goal of feeling 100% comfortable. For those who often get up with a grumble and need a few hours to get going, I even more vehemently recommend the cold shower. It will put a smile on your face on the way to work.
Cold shower from a psychological point of view
Since you have already mastered this challenge, you approach all other challenges of the day with optimism. As you have just learned, the cold shower will improve your mood and strengthen your self-confidence. You will approach all upcoming tasks, exams, conversations with more confidence and therefore master them more successfully. But the cold shower or cold training have many more advantages for mental strength and physique, which I would like to explain to you in more detail. Trust me and just take regular cold showers. After 2-3 cold showers, the cold will almost not bother you anymore and you will have an easy start into cold training. You will be thrown into the "cold water" so to speak, but it's worth it 😉
How does our body react to cold / cold training?
In general, your body often reacts to weather changes with fatigue, circulation problems and headaches. This is simply because your body is not used to these suddenly cold temperatures in winter. Because nowadays we sit comfortably in our insulated apartment on the warm sofa and have turned up our heating. Among other technical development, we are so in the course of time also significantly more sensitive to cold. That we freeze quickly and become ill more easily is therefore not surprising.
In cold temperatures, your body then begins to shiver in order to generate heat and counteract the cold. Of course, since muscle shivering also uses up a lot of energy, it doesn't last forever. The cold causes the muscles of your skin arteries to contract, inhibiting your blood flow and making your skin pale. Your body basically reacts to cold on the following different levels₁:
- Cell level: Mitochondria produce the energy in our body. The more mitochondria you have in your cells, the more cold-resistant you are.
- Fat level: There are the "bad" white fat cells and the rare but "very good" brown fat cells in the body. The more brown fat tissue you have, the more heat your body produces. The brown fat is preferred by babies and in adults this fat disappears because it is simply not needed.
- Muscle Level: Muscles are full of mitochondria and produce heat at rest and by shivering to protect your body from the cold. They also serve as insulation for our organs.
- Organ / hormone level: A healthy intestine can optimally utilize the nutrients you absorb and your Strengthen immune system. Your thyroid gland is responsible for the production of mitochondria. With sufficient carbohydrates, iodine and selenium you get its function going.
Through targeted cold training, you can manage to significantly increase the number of your mitochondria and brown adipose tissue mass to simply become more cold resistant. Before I go into more detail about cold training, let me quickly explain the difference between cold and freezing.
Difference between cold & freezing
The difference between cold and freezing is basically habit. At least in Germany, we usually enjoy our warm apartment and when we go out into the cold, we dress warmly. So basically, if we don't take care of it ourselves and train our cold resistance, our body needs less and less thermal protection. Assuming this description also applies to you: if you go outside in the cold in boxer shorts in sub-zero temperatures, you will start to shiver and freeze after a few seconds. You freeze because your body is no longer prepared for these cold temperatures.
If you prepare your body for these normally unaccustomed temperatures through targeted cold training, you will feel cold. And that even though it is cold. The reason for this is thermoregulation. Freezing indicates a disturbed heat regulation. If the thermoregulation is trained or in tact, then you will freeze less or not at all.
Advantages of cold training (mental and physical)
Since a cold shower and also the advanced cold training regularly challenges you physically and also mentally, I would like to list the most important advantages of cold training or the regular cold shower once again. There are certainly more advantages of cold training, but these are the most important:
- Increased confidence in your own body
- Improved stress resistance
- Increased life expectancy
- Strengthened immune system (you get sick less often!)
- Better blood circulation (more beautiful skin, more beautiful hair)
- Easier weight loss (increased fat burning)
Wim Hof - The Messiah of Cold Training
Dutchman Wim Hof is also called "The Iceman" because he holds several records for enduring cold. In his course "The Wim Hof Method" he strengthens the mentality and physique of many people from all over the world every week. Following his approach or an adapted form, anyone can bring their immune system to an extremely strong level and say goodbye to quick colds. Wim does many seemingly crazy things. But only because he can. Because his body is attuned to the cold and he has learned to regulate his immune system quite consciously. He certainly has to laugh about the cold showers today. Here are a few examples of his actions in the cold and also in extreme heat:
- Wim dived 80 meters deep under a sheet of ice in Antarctica
- He completed a half marathon at -20°C in Finland. Barefoot and in shorts
- He endured over an hour in a block of ice (world record)
- He did a marathon in the Namib desert (40°C) during which he lost about 6kg of weight over the entire distance
Here is a really powerful video documentary about him:
Cold shower - How do I start cold training?
If you want to start with the cold shower now, but the cold shower is too uncomfortable for you from now on, then you should start slowly with the cold training until you end up laughing about the cold shower - no joke! I'll give you a quick guide for your cold training on the way, that makes you more resilient and strengthens your immune system sustainably:
1. shower as usual and slowly lower the temperature.
You can also start at the sink with cold water on your face and arms, but I think this is a good start to make cold showers easier. Just shower as usual, only with the small adjustment that after a few minutes you turn the water colder bit by bit until it is very cold (your own discretion). Some find this easy, others find it very difficult. I do a few breathing exercises during the cold shower. Breathe deeply, this increases your concentration for the first 20 seconds in the cold shower. If you have survived the short "cold shock", it is actually already done and your body has become accustomed to the cold shower.
2. after the start comes the cold shock
Have you already done step 1? I myself needed 2-3 cold showers until I could do this 2nd step. Today it is no longer a problem. Step 2 is the real cold shock. To do this, turn the faucet full on cold after a few seconds of showering. Pull it through while breathing in and out hard again. Basically, this step of cold training is like step 1, only already significantly advanced.
3. draw yourself a cold bath
Either you put the plug directly into the bathtub with step 2 (think of the water consumption) or you take a really cold bath on another day with step 3. I combined step 2 and 3 because the cold bath is once again a real step up from the cold shower. It's best to sit in the tub and then gradually soak in the cold bath. Only after a few minutes lie down with your whole upper body in the cold water. Try to stay in the cold bath for at least 15 minutes, but get out of the tub if you feel funny. Not everyone's body takes the sudden extreme cold so well. When you get out of the tub, your feet will be quite warm and your skin will be a bit red. Why is that? You have stimulated your body's blood circulation very strongly, because it is trying to counteract the cold. Can you feel the energy?
4. cold bath with ice
Congratulations! Have you also mastered the 3rd step of the cold training and need another boost? Then add some ice cubes so that it has a noticeable effect on the water temperature. If you are still in the initial phase of cold training, you should not stay in the tub with ice cubes for more than 5-10 minutes.
5. out into nature!
This is the ultimate goal of cold weather training. Go out into nature and find a cold lake, where you would not have dared to go even with your little toe a few weeks ago, let alone voluntarily. But please always make clear beforehand what water temperature you will find. In order to always be able to measure the water temperature quickly, I recommend that you this water thermometer.
I hope I didn't throw you in the "cold water" too much 😉 Can you take cold showers easier now? The cold shower is usually the first challenge of the day and makes you feel powerful when you've mastered it. Try it out!