When the weather outside is frightful, it can be awfully tempting to indulge in some comfort food and curl up with a good book or movie. But if you spend the whole winter doing that, you may start to feel the effects of inactivity well before springtime rolls around. Before you retire to the sofa, be sure you’ve done some physical activity every day. Exercise will help keep your spirits and energy up, and weight gain at bay, through those short days and long nights of winter.
Get a pedometer or app that tracks your daily activity. Tracking the number of steps you take can be a great incentive to be more active. Aim for 10,000 steps a day. Take the stairs, park your car at the far end of the lot, or walk the few blocks to the grocery store instead of driving. It all adds up! And when cold weather and icy sidewalks make walking outside unpleasant or even hazardous, head to your local mall to get your walking in. Avoid the food court, and if you spot any sales you just can’t resist, you can reward yourself after you’ve completed your allotted steps for the day.
Is there an activity you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t gotten around to doing? Whether it’s salsa dancing or kickboxing, sign up for a class this winter so you can add a new skill to your repertoire. Doing something new is exciting and adds spice to your life and can be just the incentive you need to keep moving throughout the cold days ahead. You might even make some new friends!
Heading out to the gym may not be appealing when the weather is unpleasant, but you can just as easily stay active at home. Try a new video workout, or set up a playlist of upbeat tunes to rock out to as you do housework. Remember: From sweeping the house to shoveling snow, any way you can keep active counts. Need a snack between activities? Avocados From Mexico are available year-round and you can turn into a number of amazing snacks and meals. Check out the recipe section of Avocados From Mexico for lots of fresh ideas!
Skating is both fun and physically challenging, so find a rink near you, and get out on the ice. Check the free skating schedule, plan it as part of your weekly activities, and invite some friends to join you to make the skate a social activity as well as a workout. Whether you’d like to brush up on your skills or it’s your first time on the ice, winter is the perfect time to channel your inner Olympian!
Take your cue from the kids! They don’t let the cold weather stop them from going out to play. Bundle up and get outside, make a snowman, build a snow fort, or challenge your friends to a snowball fight. If there’s a hill near you, you can grab a sled (or improvise one) and have some fun sliding and running back up. You’ll get your physical activity and a dose of adrenaline to get your heart pumping. Being out in the sunshine can improve your mood and give you more energy for other activities, too.
Whatever activity you choose, you’ll find wintertime far more enjoyable if you spend it keeping active. When the warmer days come around, you’ll be ready to meet them with a spring in your step!