Cold Exposure: Wim Hoff Method
March 2021 - The Art of Discomfort - Cold Exposure:
So here's a throwback to, a few years ago, where I was doing the WHM - Wim Hoff Method
Working in the health industry (and the all the BS myth involved) I research and try out, so as to experience a variety of systems and fads' so as to continue to grow/progress both personally and professionally...
This includes the Wim Hoff Method that I have been doing for 4-5years now
Now, firstly cold exposure, and the benefits, have been around for donkey's years
However, Wim Hoff - the Iceman - has brought it further into the mainstream having actually put together this system not just for those physical benefits but also the mental benefits
I have also previously posted on cold exposure, the art of discomfort, and these benefits on our socials
Including recently regarding this new upcoming TV show here in the UK
So even though cold exposure, and the benefits, has been around for years but lets see if more people become aware (many have become more aware of their overall wellbeing in the last couple of years) to the benefits and even now try it because its going to be on mainstream TV with Holly wibblywobbly and all the reality b-list 'celebs'
>If you have to be paid to do it you are missing the point<
Anyhow, If you still don't yet know, Wim is a Dutch motivational speaker and extreme athlete noted for his ability to withstand freezing temperatures. He has set Guinness World Records for swimming under ice and prolonged full-body contact with ice, and previously held the record for a barefoot half marathon on ice and snow. He attributes these feats to his Wim Hof Method (WHM), a combination of frequent cold exposure, breathing techniques, yoga and meditation
Hof has said that his sadness over the loss of his first wife, who died by suicide in 1995 due to depression, was formative in leading him to develop techniques to face low-temperature environments
Some of Wim's claims regarding the system have been scientifically proven and some haven't
However, here is a little of my own personal experience I initially started out standing outdoors in the winter in just me pants (not sure what the neighbours thought ) before the ice cold showers where I began with 1 minute and eventually hit my overall goal of 10 min ice cold shower, which kinda makes me ready for the ice bath, although I mainly average 2-4 mins daily as I'm also mindful of waste. I have kept up with the daily (over the past couple of years)
Even whilst abroad where the water temperature is still mild
Which makes it challenging after the holiday
So what are the benefits?
There are many including: increases alertness
reduces inflammation improves circulation aids muscle soreness and recovery immune system better sleep known to relieve depression
Proper exposure to the cold starts a cascade of health benefits, including the buildup of brown adipose tissue and resultant fat loss, reduced inflammation that facilitates a fortified immune system, balanced hormone levels, improved sleep quality, and the production of endorphins— the feel-good chemicals in the brain that naturally elevate your mood
Not forgetting anxiety which I used to struggle with a lot (until I discovered, accepted, and worked on the source, more in the my story article) and this is one of the biggest improvements I have personally experienced due to working on the art of discomfort... (doesn't have to be the cold- as Wim Hoff says the cold is just a mirror) As we know, to achieve success and any goal there will be an element of struggle, stress, and discomfort (bit most in this entitled work we live in will avoid) and from past experience it's all to easy to sit in the comfort zone - a beautiful place but nothing ever grows there! Thing is, I've never liked the cold (possibly fathers adopted Mediterranean blood) so if i can step into a cold shower every morning training that discomfort (along with all the benefits) then I feel unstoppable for the rest of the day and for me to actually be 'missing' the cold (although I still love the heat) is a big switch This is what I mean by strong body + strong mindset = unstoppable Anyhow, this system involves breathing and cold exposure such as cold showers and ideally ice baths (some of these guys who follow it use lakes etc) the breathing has a lot of benefits (for another day) cause what is life? I incorporate this within my morning (meditation) routine (remember the morning routine and creating your day post) this helps brings peace, calm and also being present (another good one for anxiety) the breathing techniques (can now SOMETIMES hold my breath for 2min + more discomfort right there) also helps act/control the bodies thermostat, therefore, preparing for the cold exposure (you don't just jump in) So running this health, fitness, lifestyle business for past 10 years I'm always researching, studying and testing, in order to progress and challenge not only myself but all the guys I work with, some things are fads some are BS and some are placebo's etc
I'd definitely recommend trying cold exposure and if you do then I'd also definitely recommend the WHM as no doubt it has helped me. I have also learned from experiences of working and being certified with some of these world class (and famous) coaches fitness professionals and mentors is I don't agree with everything they say or do/promote (and that's OK) and I don't have too. I research study PRACTICE (you gotta actually DO people) test and monitor and take what works for me and the guys I work with (even in a group format they have individual needs) So don't believe EVERYTHING question it, question your beliefs (beliefs that can hold us back been guilty of it myself) form your opinions and then question it some MORE! I once read somewhere 'Don't have hero's, be your own hero'
If you'd like to learn more about the wake up warrior system, my personal blueprint, grab the free 5-pillar guide:
Anton 'loves the cold' Hedges PS - This cold exposure isn't compulsory for these all guys using the wake up warrior health and longevity system (although the morning mindset 'creative mode' routine is) but they are all open to questioning and applying which is why they are experiencing rapid results not just physically but mentally and emotionally!
PPS - Try and learn more about the WHM method here: https://www.wimhofmethod.com/practice-the-method