Skiing down the slopes for half of the day to spend the other jumping, squatting and planking may sound like holidays right out of hell. However, ski boot camps are becoming more and more popular for skiers to prepare themselves for winter activities and improve their fitness levels while already out there. So if you never seem to have time to get yourself back in shape, and have just a week’s worth of holiday this winter, why not benefit by adding a bit of a boot-camp regime to your next ski holiday?
Most workout sessions you’d encounter in a skiing boot camp will be focused on strengthening your body. Exercises like jumping squats and alternating lunges will develop your hamstrings, quadriceps and gluteal muscles which are essential for a good ski position while planking will strengthen your core and abdominal muscles that will keep you upright when skiing. Also expect a lot of running, push-ups and sit ups, all performed in the snow.
Nothing like a yoga session will soothe the soreness in your muscles you’re likely to get after your first days in the camp and stretching is a fundamental part of any ski boot-camp. Not only will it prevent the stiffness in your muscles after hours of skiing but it will also help you keep your muscles long and lean for good circulation. Some boot camps even offer a complimentary massage.
Sliding Down the Calorie Hill
The main advantage of being in a ski bootcamp is that every exercise doesn’t have to come with huffing and puffing and you can still burn calories doing what you actually love, so go out and hit the slopes while enjoying a stunning scenery and let the calories take care of themselves! FYI, an hour long skiing session burns around 422 calories, Nordic (cross-country) skiing – 511 calories per hour while snowshoeing brings the burn rate to a blistering 551 cals/hour. In case you were counting (you know you are).
Revising Eating Habits
Just like the regular ones, ski bootcamps also aim to tackle your eating habits serving you low-carb hi-protein dishes like steaks and salmon with steamed vegetables and making sure you eat your meals regularly – the number one rule in boosting your metabolism. You’ll also learn to control your portion sizes as it’s really easy to overeat.
The Cold Workout
Working out in the snow you’d naturally consume more energy which your body would use to stay warm. In addition, if you’re working out in a deeper snow, you could raise the amount of calories burned by 60% while mere walking through the snow can triple the amount of calories you’d burn by walking in the same pace on a treadmill. However, even with such favourable conditions no one can guarantee you weigh loss if you’ll be rewarding your efforts with a cup of hot chocolate every day.
While you might find it hard to follow this regime without a personal trainer, usually assigned to you in an official bootcamp, perhaps you’ll find solace in the fact that most bootcamp-style ski holidays still come at the price of a car. Let’s admit it – even if you were saving up to spend your holiday in that luxury ski chalet Chamonix, jumping squats would be the last thing on your mind there.
What are your tricks for staying fit throughout your holiday?
Gavin Harvey is a personal trainer who tirelessly looks for fun ways of staying fit, even through that naughty holiday season. When he is not in the gym, he blogs for Dynamic Lives.