T Nation

Cold Showers


Whats the deal on Cold showers and Ice baths within an hour of working out?


Not sure about 'the deal' but I likea cold shower after a workout. My normal routine is to start my workout early, bout 4 hours before work. A little bit of warm up cardio and stretching then right into the heavy lifts, I like to start my week with squats, after that the rest of the week seems easy :slightly_smiling: After about a n hour to 90 minutes I sit in the sauna for about 30 minutes and just sweat, opens up the pores and clears the skin and just feels good after a workout the follow that up with an ice cold show to rinse the sweat off and close up the poors.

I get to work feeling rejuvinated and I've found it helps with the skin, the combination of sauna then cold water. But my ancestry is finnish and finns seem universally, to love saunas followed by a roll in the snow.


A few months ago I started taking contrast showers after I lifted. I think I read it on Dan John's site, but I could be wrong. Anyway, 2 minutes of warm shower followed by 30 seconds of cold. I repeat the cycle 2 to 3 times, and then follow up with ice. It's been a godsend. That combined with deep stretching and foam rolling has allowed me to run Waterbury's High Frequency program with no problem. I'm sure I'm screwing up somewhere, but my present program has really worked for me.


I used to take an ice bath twice a day during 2 a day practices. I did it for an injury, but while everyone else was complaining about muscle soreness, my muscles felt fine.


I did the Sauna-to-freezing water thing once (had to break the ice). I could feel my heart trying to escape from my ribcage as though it were a cornered beast. That made for a good aneurysm check.


Contrast showers are the shit. I've never taken only a cold shower, but I definitly utilize contrast showers after particularly hard practices/workouts.


I take cold showers all the time. In fact, whenever I shower before 12 in the dorms, I like to call it an involuntary contrast shower.


Dan John mentioned contrast showers recently, and Thib brought these up a while ago. I think the theory is blood flow, but I'm not sure. I like them and use them. Just a word of warning, your heart skips a few beats, your lungs gasp for air, your boys get scared, and your a-hole quivers.



Sounds like a regular Saturday night for me.



Im too much of a pussy, ill stick with the warm shower.


I did this in the middle of winter one time... except it was at a girls house with a hot tub and a pool. Bad idea.

I usually do CT's 30 seconds hot, 20 seconds cold, repeat method. Except only after doing any PC work. I let it hit at about the bottom of my shoulder blades and it drips down my back to my legs. Great for recovery, especially adter deads.

I dont do it on the front though, I'm too much of a wuss.