So while I have yet to take a cold shower, I am working on keeping the water warm instead of scalding hot. This of course will save money on my gas bill and I'm assuming the cooler the water, the less I will linger, helping me with my other goal of shorter showers. I spent a few hours this evening reading up on the benefits of cold showers and hydrotherapy (hot/cold shower circuits). The list of benefits is impressive and convincing me to give it a try. Cold showers increase blood and lymph circulation, boost the immune system, reduce blood pressure, and help to detox organs and muscles.
Hydrotherapy consists of alternating between hot and cold water during the same shower. I've read a few different variations on how to complete a hydrotherapy session, but the basics are to the same. Start with warm water, then go as hot as you can stand it for about 2 minutes, before switching to cold, as cold as you can stand it for about 20-30 seconds. Continue to alternate between hot and cold for 3-5 rounds. Some articles I read recommended always finishing on cold, but I did read another that said finish on cold if you want to feel invigorated and energized, hot if you want to finish feeling relaxed and calm. I'll have to experiment to see if I notice any differences and if I have a preference for ending with hot or cold water. Just the thought of standing under cold water is making me cringe, but I've tried whackier things before. I will report back after I give it a shot.