Safe and Beneficial Cold Training for Women
There is a bunch of different ways to make your body stronger with the benefits of cold. Aside from ‘arctic’ spas and cryotherapy centers (where your full body gets exposed to liquid nitrogen vapors), you can also take advantage of cold thermal shock using the following:
- by playing sports in the cold, with light clothes;
- by swimming in the ocean when the water temperature is low;
- by taking an icy shower or an ice bath regularly;
- by reducing the heating temperature at home in winter;
- (in case of muscle pains) by applying an ice pack, ice cubes, freezer bag, or an ice-cold towel to the painful area.
While staying in frosty air and bathing in icy water may be usual practice for many people, newcomers should not get exposed for more than a few minutes, which goes up to 10 to 20 minutes after acclimation. Cold procedures are contraindicated for pregnant women and young children. Other warnings, like the ones below, may specifically concern your state of health.
Precautions to take
Cold exposition causes significant vasoconstriction, which can potentially be dangerous to hypertension sufferers. For people with cardiac conditions, a quick icy shower would probably be acceptable, but not something like ice baths or other ways of immersion in extremely cold water.
Simply speaking, you ought to listen to your body. Individual tolerance for hot and cold temperatures varies considerably, and if you go too far over your individual threshold, you can harm yourself. The ability to withstand colder temperatures is based on how well your body generates heat; as we’ve just mentioned, people differ in their aptitude for staying in the cold. Specifically, we all possess different volumes of brown adipocytes and, secondly, have an unequal potential for the improvement of thermogenesis in skeletal muscles.
When to avoid cryotherapy
Be careful when combining weight-lifting exercises with cold exposure. When you do bodybuilding, oxidative stress generates reactive oxygen species (ROS) that cause an anti-inflammatory reaction in your body. This kind of response ultimately improves muscle mass.
It is well known that cryo benefits you with reducing inflammation. If you get exposed to cold within the first hour following your weight-lifting session, this will reduce the anti-inflammatory response of your body (which is so helpful for growing muscles). In view of that, it’s better to avoid icy showers or baths, as well as nitrogen cryotherapy sessions immediately after the gym.