I first started reading about the benefits of cold showers a few years ago while looking for ways to boost my self discipline.
Having a cold shower also seems to have many great health benefits although that’s not what this post is about I will list the common benefits people get from taking a cold shower.
Health Benefits People Have Claimed To Receive
- Better hair and skin
- Better blood circulation
- Immunity boost
- Stimulates weight loss
- Helps to relieve stress and depression
- Helps reduce inflammation in the body
Now I can’t be sure that all those things are 100% true or backed by science as I honestly haven’t done any significant research into the health benefits but it’s a nice bonus that can help you commit to taking them when you really don’t want to.
Do You Take Them For The Health Benefits?
The truth is, I don’t really care about those health benefits and I wouldn’t be motivated to take cold showers for those things alone. Maybe I would take them to help ease my suffering if I had depression. I’m not entirely sure on the science behind how it helps with depression but I know from experience that when you get hit with that cold water you are immediately pulled into the present moment, you are not thinking about the past or the future which means for at least a brief period you are are not focused on feeling depressed.
I remember having depression when I was a young teenager and sometimes there was a brief moment when I woke up that I completely forget I was depressed and I just felt at ease until my brain fully woke up and remembered how bad I feel (have you ever experienced that? – it’s quite bizarre). I think have a cold shower might be very similar to that experience.
Why I Love Taking Cold Showers
I really love taking a cold shower because it’s incredibly difficult and uncomfortable. It is the perfect place to practice your self discipline because you have to take a shower everyday anyway so may as well try and get some benefits from it.
Developing Discipline & Waking Up
More than just developing self discipline it will also wake you up incredibly fast and is perfect to have first thing in the morning. I always tell people it’s like injecting coffee into your blood stream. You can go from barely functioning to WIDE AWAKE in under a minute. This is mostly due to the shock of the cold water but a side benefit is it will make you take really deep breaths.
When you take these deep breaths you are taking in more oxygen which really helps with getting your circulation going and getting ready for the day ahead – this is just one of the reasons exercise in the morning helps invigorate you.
Does It Ever Get Easier
Hmm. Good Question. Yes it does and no it doesn’t.
It gets easier because you build up the discipline to just turn the cold water on and embrace it even though it sucks, the cold water is just as cold and uncomfortable 3 months later as it doesn’t randomly start to feel warmer. However your tolerance is much higher and you stop fighting the urge to get out of the water. Your body will also not be as shocked. You can tell when your body is becoming used to it because you will stop taking such a massive deep breath when the water hits you.
Should I Ease Into This or Just Jump Into Cold Showers From The Start?
I would highly recommend that when you first start out, have your normal hot shower and then at the very end turn off all the hot water for 15 – 60 seconds. This is quite a refreshing thing to do and is definitely more enjoyable than cold water from start to finish.
If you are mainly wanting to use the cold shower to wake up in the morning this would be a great way to go about it.
If you wanted to benefit from developing your self discipline as much as possible then you want to start having completely cold showers as the real test is standing under the shower head and turning on the cold water.
I will quite literally turn on some music and then look at the shower head and say “you’ll never defeat me motherf***er” as I turn the cold water on. This is just my way of telling myself that I will not let something silly like cold water control whether or not I take a shower.
It’s the same thing when you go swimming in the ocean – you try to build up the courage before running into the water and once you do – you embrace the cold.
Another great benefit you’ll find is you will save a lot of money on your water bills because not only will you stop using so much hot water, your shower times will drop down to about 2 – 5 minutes which is about a third of the time I used to take hot showers for (15-20 minutes).
A Strange Benefit I Have Found
This is definitely one of the most unexpected benefits I found.
Remember how it feels getting out of a hot shower on a cold winters day? You might even have a heater in your bathroom so that you don’t feel so cold while you dry yourself off.
When you take a cold shower – you get out of the shower and it feels kinda warm. I no longer feel the need to have any sort of heat in the bathroom – apart from standing on a bathmat as tiles can be really cold.
Every morning I go for a walk and because I wake up at about 4am it’s usually pretty cold outside so I’ll wear a jacket and usually need to keep my hands in my pockets for the first 10 minutes.
After taking cold showers the cold air outside doesn’t seem so bad anymore and I don’t even cover my hands anymore – it just feels refreshing.
I am curious if anyone else experiences that so please leave a comment below and tell me what cold showers do for you.
Thanks for reading, hopefully you got something valuable out of this.
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