Is getting more active your New Year's resolution or are you trying to shed those pesky holiday pounds? Winter is ripe with outdoor activities that offer a good workout. Plus, you can burn more calories exercising in winter because your body has to work hard to keep itself warm.
Flex your muscles. Snow creates plenty of opportunity for burning calories. When the fluffy stuff falls, ditch the snow blower and shovel your driveway and sidewalk by hand. Offer to help a neighbor or family member to maximize the workout.
Go out and play. There are many fun activities to do outside in the winter.
- Ice skating
- Downhill or cross-country skiing
- Playing in the snow with family or friends
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Walk or run. Just because it's cold out doesn't mean you can't continue your walking or running routine. Dressed and warmed up properly, this workout can be even more effective in the cold. And if you're looking for a different challenge, try snow hiking. Wearing boots and snow gear, walking through heavy or deep snow is a great workout, particularly on hilly terrain.
To stay safe when exercising outdoors:
- Dress for the weather. Wear several layers to stay warm, and so you can remove items if needed during your workout. Remember to especially protect your hands, feet, and ears.
- Thoroughly stretch and warm up before venturing outside, as the cold makes your muscles less flexible and more prone to injury.
- Wear proper safety gear and equipment for your activity to avoid injury.