I hate to break it to my friends overseas, but London isn’t a cold city. When Andrew and I started experimenting with thermal loading, we had to take cold showers on a regular basis to try to induce a shivering reaction. (With hilarious results)
Enter, Thermal Loading: Canadian Edition!
In Canada, it’s much easier. Instead of trying to expose your body to lower temperatures with cold showers or ice baths, you play chicken with the thermostat.
-1C outside? No reason to turn on the heat. We’ll think about it when it starts to hit -30C.
In the meantime, you can either put on another sweater, or you can sit in a T-Shirt and shiver. Opt to shiver.
Why would anyone subjugate themselves to this?
The benefits of thermal loading don’t depend on the mechanism by which you lower your temperature, just that do without a subsequent increase in caloric intake.
If on the other hand, shivering in your house seems excessive, you can always turn on the heat and try cryotherapy instead.
Cryotherapy is starting to make the rounds in professional running and rugby as a new mechanism for sports recovery. It totes all the benefits of an ice bath or cold shower,and while the temperatures are drastically lower, the exposure time is shorter as well.
Liquid nitrogen is pumped into a cylinder in which the athlete stands wearing gloves, mittens and a cap, while the surrounding air temperature drops steadily to -160C. (fun!)
After 2:30-3 minutes of exposure, you’re done.
Each session costs about $70.00 (35.00GBP) a pop but athletes who have under gone the procedure have a much faster recovery rate which means they can increase their total training time and maintain a high level of intensity throughout.
I’m not going to lie, I really want to try it. 😀
While constant low level cold exposure won’t give you the same effect as cryotherapy, if you’re looking for a low impact way to increase fat loss and you live in a place that has an actual winter (as opposed to England, which just gets a bit chilly), give it a shot.