Cold showers are something that we have to tolerate against our will from time to time. The discomfort associated with the chilling water is enough to make us avoid them. But perhaps the few moments of hardship are worth it for the incredible benefits you can get?
1. Become more Alert and Energetic
One of your body’s first reactions to being submerged in cold water is to deepen and quicken your breathing. The increase in oxygen intake instantly boosts your heart rate and streams a rush of blood around your body. This gives you a natural boost of energy for the day and gets you off to a good start in the morning.
If you want to put a spring in your step in the morning rather than feeling groggy and dreading the day ahead, a cold shower may be just what you need.
2. Reduces Muscle Soreness and Aids Recovery
We’ve all heard of athletes taking ice baths to aid recovery after training, but even a cold shower can have similar benefits. The cold water helps recovery in a number of ways:
- Constricts blood vessels and helps to push out waste products like lactic acid out of the bloodstream
- Diminishes Swelling and tissue breakdown
- Reduces metabolic activity and suppresses inflammation
Perhaps walking up the stairs won’t be so unbearable after a long run if you just introduce some cold showers in your life.
3. Restore your Hair and Skin
One of the best ways to naturally preserve your skin and hair is to have cold showers regularly. Speaking from experience, cold showers help dramatically to reduce the prominence of acne. Instead of drying your skin with overly hot showers, use cold water to tighten your cuticles and stop them from getting clogged up.
In regards to hair, both warm and cold water have their benefits. Starting with warm water can help open your pores to let your hair products do their job. Cold water will then seal your pores and retain the moisture to leave your hair healthier and shinier.
4. Relieve Stress and Depression
Studies have suggested that the impact of cold showers can aid in relieving depression and anxiety just due to the sheer amount of electrical impulses sent to the brain.
Furthermore, the discipline associated with having a cold shower rather than going for that ever so appealing warm water will promote your tolerance to stress, improve your willpower and even make you less susceptible to diseases.
Now although I’ve given you a range of benefits of cold showers. Here’s a word of warning. Just a few minutes of icy cold water can sometimes lead to the development of hypothermia and potentially reverse all the initial benefits so it’s best to be cautious.
To start benefiting from cold showers, I’d recommend working your way up slowly. Take a normal shower and then make the water progressively colder for the last minute or so. Control your breathing with long, deep breaths and you will slowly get used to the feeling at which point you can start working up to longer periods with colder water.