Depending on where your state of residence, the winter months can consist of a few weeks of a regionalcold snap, or months and months of snow and negative temperatures. To keep yourself and your family members off the couch and active when it’s dreary outside, there are many ways to move your body, give yourself a little cardio, and burn a few calories along the way.
Take The Stairs
At work, at home or while running errands, you encounter stairs every day. Skip the elevator and take the steps. If your home has a staircase and you are in good health, run the steps several times every day until you feel winded and your heart is getting a workout. In time, you will be able to do more steps and not get winded as quickly. If your children are surefooted, you can conduct staircase races for a family fun activity.
Act Like a Kid
There’s nothing better for the heart and mind than acting like a child at times. Make a snow angel. Build a snowman. Stomp in puddles. Go sledding. Bundle up and run in a few circles. Get outside of the house, put your cares behind you and just play.
Pick up an Easy Winter Sport
If you get more than a few inches of snow every year, snowshoeing is a low cost way to get your cardio on. For about $100 you can buy quality snowshoes that strap to your waterproof boots, and you’re ready to get a great workout. Snowshoeing is essentially walking on snow, and the strength building helps develop muscle and tone. You can actually burn more calories snowshoeing than walking, running or cross country skiing at the same pace.
Walk the Mall
If you are discipled walker or not fond of shopping, putting on your tennis shoes and hitting the largest mall in your region can get you out of the house without a jacket. The natural light and energy will lift your spirits and provide you a “feel good” exercise option. Mall walking also always you to walk on your schedule, either day or night.
Find a Friend
Exercise anytime of year can be difficult for some, so a friend who shares your same goals or just wants a little one-on-one time with you can be a perfect workout companion. Ask if they will play outside or walk the mall with you. A friend can also hold you to a weekly commitment of exercise, and vice versa.
Have a Spring Goal in Mind
Goals can be very motivating to get you mentally focused on a prize in the distance that will make you feel good about yourself and how much you have accomplished getting ready for the event. A spring 5K walk or run can give you a reason to focus on exercise during the winter months. Look for an event that supports a cause you believe in, which will give you an even greater reason to participate in a satisfying goal.
Keeping your home neat and tidy might be a low priority in the grand scheme of the daily grind, but cleaning your house actually burns calories and is a great way to move your body. Check out these totals for 15 minutes of housework:
- Vacuuming: 43 calories
- Sweeping: 39 calories
- Mopping: 43 calories
- Making the bed: 18 calories
And don’t forget the kids! Nearly all of these activities are kid-friendly and will give your family the opportunity to spend time together while staying active.