I know how crazy this sounds.
When you jump in the shower in the morning, the very last thing you want to do is turn the water onto cold, not even for a second. Especially when it isn’t exactly tropical outside.
There are some pretty darned good reasons though for turning the dial down at the end of your shower and giving you and your bod an icy blast. Before I tell you the reasons though, I’m gonna tell you what I reckon is the very best way to do a cold shower.
1. Have your usual shower. Do the usual stuff like washing, shaving your pits and pins, and daydreaming. You might even want to try out the occasional exfoliation like this one (I’ve not used it myself, but there are some hot smokin’ reasons that I like the sound of it – and not just because it’s called Frank!)
2. Once you’ve completed those vital actions (especially the daydreaming part) turn the temp down. Yup. Down onto cold. If you can’t go to cold, then just turn it down to colder than it was. For a short time – anywhere between 5 and 30 seconds works.
3. Turn it back up for a little while, just long enough to warm up again.
4. Turn it back down to cold.
5. Turn it back up.
6. Finally, turn it back down to cold again, and really go for it.Turn around so the chilly water hits your back. Turn the temperature RIGHT down more than before so it feels REALLY cold
7. Switch off the shower, jump out (carefully, mind you!) and then feel the zing. And by zing, I mean, of course, the amazing buzz that will power you through the morning like a fully charged power drill.
So, why would you even consider whopping yourself with a cold shower in the morning?
Why would you want to bring on the chills when you could be warming yourself instead?
Why why why, I hear you cry.
For me, the main reasons are, in no particular order:
- It gets me used to getting into cold water. Surfing in the UK requires that I am able to handle dipping my body into water which is far colder than my body temp. Which feels, erm, cold. So I like to train myself in the ‘getting in the cold water’ skills of life. It means
- I don’t get to surf as much as I want. Having a cold shower means I get to feel like I’ve had a surf every single day (see point 1 above about day dreaming – you didn’t think I was day dreaming about the laundry, did you? I was dreaming about catching the best wave ever, naturally).
- As soon as you turn off the cold shower, you start to feel zingy, tingly and warm as a baby in swaddling. Seriously. It’s amazing and it wakes you up better than any cup of coffee can.
- It increases circulation to your skin. You know that gorgeous glow you have on the beach when you shwoosh around feeling like a million quid? You can almost get that exact same feeling after a cold shower.
- A cold shower is considered a good way to boost a detox. Whether you believe that or not, it sure does get things pumping and anything that gets you pumping is a good think, right?
- It’s great for sore muscles. Post bootcamp, run or surf, a cold shower forces blood to your muscles and gets them feeling fab a bit quicker. I also swear by a cold shower when my back (dodgy neck, don’t you know) is playing up.
- It’s quick. You might not have time to make a smoothie, or get a massage or go for a run, but you def have time to have a blast of cold for 30 seconds in the morning.
I have to say this though: if you have a heart or circulation issue, or you are ill or recovering, then don’t bother with a cold shower. Cold showers are fab, but you can’t just go jumping in there without knowing your limitations, so be warned.
Cold showers are just one of the quick ways you can boost your morning – it does take an extra boost of bravery though. Finishing off with a cold shower in the morning is just one of the challenges we’ve been having in our Start Right and Carry On group – and the brave souls there LOVED it!
Are you up for the challenge?