Why include regular swimming in your weight loss regime?
11 December 2018
You might overlook the swimming pool when planning a new fitness or weight loss regime. Whether due to a touch of shyness, a lack of experience, or simply not wanting to share the waters with half of the local school kids, many of us side-step this unique, all-over body workout.
Improved mood and motivation
During this year's World Mental Health Day, it was reported that swimming can help to alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. Keeping your mentality right when trying to lose weight is key to avoiding becoming side-tracked, and any exercise that pits you against yourself will show you exactly where you are in your motivation.
Once you are in the water, it’s up to you to focus your energy on regulating the speed and rhythm of your strokes while concentrating on your breathing. As when you meditate, you train yourself to stay focused, reinforcing your mental strength and mental health with every length of the pool.
All-over body strength
No matter which stroke you practise, swimming is one of the few activities that work your entire body. Your core is almost constantly engaged, your arms and legs are hard at work, and even your neck is strengthened as you manage your breathing. This means muscle groups which are more toned and, therefore, will naturally burn more fat.
Another great bonus of swimming is that no particular muscle group is over-exerted – and it’s better for your joints and tendons than most other forms of cardio. Swimming regularly can also reduce the risk of several chronic illnesses, including heart disease and type 2 diabetes – making it, for weight loss, a rare form of exercise that both works hard and hurts less.
Excellent for recovery
It’s common to suffer injuries as we exercise, or begin to suffer from niggles and repetitive strains the harder we train. This is why swimming should always be part of any exercise or weight loss regime, as it gives us the option to carry on working out when parts of the body begin to ask for a break.
By swimming regularly, regardless of our physical circumstances, we ensure when the time comes that we can’t perform other activities, we have the form and experience to make the most of a swim. This is why you’ll find swimming an essential part of many weight loss boot camps, where attendees are drilled and trained into understanding the most effective techniques for staying healthy and losing weight.
An activity for all stages of life
As the body ages, it will inevitably become harder to perform some activities. Many people do continue jogging, cycling and weight-lifting well into retirement age, but most people become naturally less active as they age. This makes keeping the weight off tougher not only as the body ages but also as the metabolism naturally slows down accordingly.
However, swimming is one of the most effective ways that anybody of any age can stay fit and lose weight. With increased mental and physical strength and the added bonus of reduced wear and tear, it’s an activity that everybody should regularly enjoy as part of their weight loss and fitness regime