Ways to Stay Active This Winter
Keeping up with your exercise routine in the cold winter months can seem nearly impossible, especially if your typical routine involves trudging to the gym or walking outdoors. Not to mention that the colder, darker weather tends to weaken our motivation to get moving. But just because the snow is falling outside, don’t think that’s any excuse to be idle. Below are several ways to keep you active in the bitter cold months. Just remember to always consult your doctor before trying any new physical activities to make sure they are safe for you to do.
Play in the snow!
Did you know that building a snow man for an hour can burn as many as 285 calories and making snow angels can burn 214 calories in an hour? Sledding for just 30 minutes burns 390 calories, wow! Not only are these activities great forms of exercise, but they’re also lots of fun for the whole family. But before trekking out into the snowy tundra, be sure to bundle up in many layers to stay warm, dry and safe.
If you are feeling a bit more ambitious or are a true athlete at heart, you may want to up the ante and hit the ice or the slopes. Ice skating and skiing are great fun for both the amateurs and athletes alike. 30 minutes of downhill skiing burns an average of 495 calories and the same time spent cross country skiing burns 645 calories. Feel more comfortable on skates instead of skis? Ice skating for 30 minutes can burn 285 calories. Just be sure to always be safe, use quality equipment, and take proper precautions, such as wearing appropriate outdoor gear.
No matter how often you clean your home there always seem to be more to do. Not only can cleaning keep your house looking fabulous, but it can also help you burn lots of calories in the comfort of your home. Just 30 minutes of moderate housework can burn as many as 165 calories. Now if you are feeling ambitious and try vigorously mopping your floors for 30 minutes you can burn a whopping 255 calories. Windows looking grimy? Clean them for just 30 minutes and you’ve burned 188 calories on average. So get out those cleaning supplies and get to scrubbing, mopping and dusting!
There are no shortage of outdoor chores that need to be tended to during the winter months. These chores include shoveling snow and chopping wood, among others. One hour of continuous snow shoveling burns nearly 700 calories and 30 minutes of chopping wood burns about 350 calories. Who would have thought keeping your driveway clear and your fireplace stocked could be so good for your body?
Move More at Home and When Out
House clean? Snow shoveled? Too cold to play outside? There are plenty of indoor activities to try. Home workout DVDs, game consoles such as Wii Fit, and walking stairs are just a few ways to keep moving at home and even at work. Getting up and moving during commercial breaks is an easy way to burn calories while enjoying your favorite show. During a one hour show you can fit in as much as 20 minutes of exercise if working out during commercials. When you are out shopping you can get your heart pumping by walking an extra lap or two around the mall or supermarket. How about trying to take the stairs instead of the elevator? More calories are wiped out with each step! A great way to measure all these extra steps is to wear a pedometer, use a fitness app on your phone or if you are tech savvy, try a fitness tracking device such as a Fit Bit.
Dance, Dance, Dance!
You don’t have to have rhythm to enjoy a good dance session. Dancing is a free, fun and easy way to burn calories and relieve stress. Dancing is also something that the whole family can enjoy doing together. Thirty minutes of moderate dancing burns an average of 340 calories. So get up and get moving!