How to Keep Active in the Winter
We all know how important it is to keep active. It’s good for so many things, including our cardiovascular health, muscular health, and mental health. However, even the most dedicated exercise enthusiast can have a hard time keeping moving in winter. Cold days and long nights make it hard to get out from under the covers, let alone get the body moving, but there are simple ways to get motivated when the weather outside is frigid.
If you’re not crazy about indoor exercise, the first thing you need to consider when exercising outdoors is making sure you have the right gear. It can be difficult to coax yourself outside when the temperature dips, but owning the right workout gear makes it much easier. For more active events like running, hiking or cross-country skiing, consider layers that can be taken off and added back later, allowing you to more comfortably — and safely — balance rising body temperatures with the cold air temperatures. It’s also important to monitor the weather and plan ahead. Pay attention to the weather forecasts on your phone that give several days’ notice so that you can prepare for your week. Be dressed appropriately and plan your winter activity accordingly.
One good thing about working out outdoors is that winter can be a time for some really fun sports! Some of our favorite activities during that time include brisk walking or hiking, jogging or running, raking leaves, shoveling snow, ice skating, sledding, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing.
If, on the other hand, you find the colder temperatures to be too much to handle, you’ll be glad to know that there are tons of amazing ways to work out indoors. One of the simplest things you can do is to work out online. Consider tuning into a TV, online, live Zoom, or Instagram workout class. You can find free or low-cost exercise videos online to help you do aerobics, dance, stretch, or build strength. The choices are limitless! You can also look for ways to be physically active indoors that also check off your to-do list! Housework such as vacuuming, sweeping, and cleaning all count towards your physical activity goals.
If you’d like, and you have the resources, you could also make room in your house for a home gym. If you’re used to working out you might already have this established, but if you’re new to fitness, you could install an exercise bike or treadmill, a yoga mat, and a few sets of dumbells. Even if you don’t have much room, you can still get a yoga mat and learn bodyweight exercises to keep moving when you don’t want to go outside!
Whatever method you choose, it’s crucial to stay motivated. Remind yourself of why it’s so important to stay active throughout the year – even when it feels hard to do so. Exercise is too good for your body to pass up. Think of the winter as a time to get more creative with your exercise routine. Staying on track throughout the winter months will lead you to feeling even better than you usually do in the spring and summer seasons. Cheers to working out and feeling your best!