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5 Ways To Stay On Top Of Your Cold Therapy Routine.

cold therapy routine

More than just a trend, cold therapy routine is proven to not only revitalize your body but also sharpen your mind, lower anxiety and improve mental health. Taking an Ice Bath is a type of cryotherapy, it is a practice that raises a few eyebrows because nobody likes taking a prolonged dip in icy cold water unless there are a few good reasons to do so.

That’s where we come in. Think of this article as your friendly guide, here to walk you through the whys and the hows and a foolproof method of sticking with your cold therapy routine like a pro.

The Benefits of a Cold Therapy Routine

Dipping into cold water might seem daunting, but the rewards are well worth the initial shiver.

Improved blood circulation? Check. Reduced muscle inflammation? Absolutely. Enhanced mental clarity? You bet. This is just the tip of the iceberg. 

Here’s a complete list:

  • Better sleep
  • Reduced stress, anxiety, and depression
  • Building resilience
  • Increasing energy
  • Boosting white blood cell count and immune system

To accelerate the advantages, you can try and combine a cold therapy routine with regular massages and workouts.

Building A Sustainable Cold Therapy Routine

ice bath routine

Cold therapy does not have to be just getting a tub full of ice-cold water and taking a dip. You can ease into it by taking cold showers, trying a cryotherapy chamber, or icy water plunges. Here is how to start and keep at it:

#1 – Setting Goals for Your Cold Therapy Routine

Setting goals is like drawing a map for your journey; it gives you direction and a destination. When it comes to cold therapy, start with goals that don’t intimidate you. Maybe it’s as simple as a 30-second cold shower every morning for a week. Or perhaps, taking the plunge into a cold bath twice a week.

You also don’t have to start with frigid temperatures right off the gate. Never risk your body going into shock or pushing it to the extremes. Ideally, the temperature should be below 60°F (15.5°C), but it’s perfectly fine to start warmer and work your way down.

The key is to set clear, achievable targets that encourage you to dip your toes into the practice without feeling overwhelmed. Remember, it’s not about proving how tough you are; it’s about integrating this into your life in a way that feels enriching and sustainable.

#2 – The Role of Accountability Partners

When you are doing something that’s not easy, the brain will find a hundred excuses to avoid the situation, letting your resolve weaken. Enter the accountability partner—a friend, family member, or fellow cold therapy enthusiast who can share the experience with you. This offers accountability, encouragement, sharing tips, and even turning your routine into a social activity.

If you’re unsure where to find one, look for online forums, social media groups, or local clubs dedicated to cold therapy or general wellness. These platforms often host challenges and share success stories, providing motivation and a sense of belonging, or even if you’re after the research, you can check out our scientific papers, or read the other research behind cold water therapy.

You can also share your journey on social media. It’s not about bragging; it’s about committing to your goals publicly and inspiring others along the way.

#3 – Keeping Things Interesting

A cold therapy routine never has to be boring. Changing up your methods can keep things interesting, and something forward to. Whether it’s varying the length of your cold exposure or throwing in a couple of extra minutes to incorporate breath work – the key is to stay curious and remain open to keeping your routine fresh and enjoyable for both body and mind.

#4 – Bridging With Other Fitness Activities

Cold therapy can also benefit immensely from diversity within your fitness routine. Try adding a day or two of yoga, along with a good bit of stretches. These practices enhance flexibility, as well as your focus which would bear the cold water well.

Several breath exercises, including the Wim Hof Method, promote how breathing is a powerful tool to control your body’s reaction to the cold, which can enrich your cold therapy practice immensely.

One can also couple strength training alongside a cold therapy routine. Apart from an increase in metabolism, building muscle also increases the body’s tolerance to cold, thus making the plunge feel a little less piercing after a while.

Mixing it up helps prevent boredom, but also ensures that your mind and body are being continuously called into action. It’s about creating a wellness routine, of which your cold therapy experience is the part, not the whole of it.

#5 – Best Times for Cold Water Plunge

A cold plunge as part of the morning routine is special because the cold water seems to wake every bit of you up – mind, body, and soul. It imprints your body with a powerful message to rise and shine and allows the day to form from one of resilience.

For those who cringe at the thought of starting your day with unimaginable cold, cold therapy in the evening would be more helpful. It’s a brilliant way to relax your muscles after a hard day and lower your body temperature improving your sleep quality.

In the end, the best time is when you’re ready. You consume it and integrate it into your life at times when it is most beneficial to do so. When should you throw in your cold plunge? The answer could be a matter of a little trial and error. Some swear by the extra kick of a cold shower to begin their day, while others will tell you that an evening dip unwinds them and helps them sleep better.

Think about what time makes the most sense in your day for a boost of energy or a moment of calm, and start there. When it comes to the world of cold therapies, there’s really no fit for all – because in the world of wellness, there isn’t.

Remember, it’s not about how cold the water is or how long you can stay in; it’s about the commitment to stepping out of your comfort zone and embracing the energizing embrace of the cold. Start small, stay consistent, and let the transformative power of cold therapy benefit your soul. 

Author

  • Dale Folland

    Dale is a seasoned Nutritionist with over two decades of experience in the health and wellness industry. His expertise has been sought after by elite groups such as NZ SAS Soldiers and NZ Fire Service, where he has contributed to optimising their performance and well-being. Dale is also a renowned speaker and educator and his work has been recognised in publications like the Daily Mail and various US media outlets.

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