Winter. Ah, let’s face it: Wintertime is one of the worst seasons for staying fit and healthy. It’s so tempting to stay in bed under the covers all day or to stay cosy with a cup of hot chocolate on the couch while watching our favourite holiday movie. While there’s room for all these things, we also can’t neglect our physical fitness and movement.
Of course, we need to consider that we’re currently living in the time of a pandemic, with experts warning us that this could be the worst winter months we’ve had in years. So we also need to take into account our health and safety and that of others. Keep moving safely with Winter Fitness: Fun Activities to do During the Cold Season!
Do Some Outdoor Activities (with caution)
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed that outdoor activities are safer than indoor ones because it’s easier to keep people apart, and there’s more ventilation. If you wear your masks properly and keep a safe physical distance from other people (which is six feet or two metres), it’s generally safe to do some outdoor activities with the proper safety precautions in place.
If you’re the type to get motivated to move more when you’re outside, then don’t hesitate to keep doing your exercise routines or using your jogging route even during winter, as long as you wear the proper workout gear to keep you warm and practice minimal public health distancing measures. Some activities you can do include:
Jogging, Hiking, or Walking Your Dog in Winter
Since the weather tends to get extreme during winter, do everything in moderation. Don’t push yourself too hard since wet and cold conditions can also get slippery. Run at a moderate speed, don’t run too far in one distance, bundle up, and increase your warm-up to about 15 minutes.
Enjoy Playing in the Snow
When the snow falls and the temperatures drop, it’s the perfect time to enjoy some winter fun with friends and family. One of the best things about snow is that it creates a natural playground for all kinds of activities. Whether you’re building a snowman, sledding down a hill, or engaging in a snowball fight, there’s no shortage of ways to have fun in the snow. And when you’re finished playing, you can always warm up with a cup of hot chocolate. You’ll create lasting memories and maybe even work up a good appetite for dinner. But before you head out to build a snowman, sledding, or snow tubing, there are a few things you’ll need.
First, make sure you have the right clothing to stay warm. That means a coat, hat, scarf, gloves, and boots. Second, grab your sled or a snow tube to slide down the hill. Inflatable snow tubes have handles or straps on the sides to help riders keep their balance as they slide down the hill and are safer whereas sleds go downhill much faster. Finally, you’ll need some basic supplies for building things like snowmen and igloos. A shovel will come in handy for scooping up snow, and a bucket can be used for shaping it into balls. So next time the snow starts to fall, head outside and enjoy some quality time with your loved ones.
Go on that Winter Ski Trip
Experts say it’s generally safe to go skiing since it’s a low-risk activity and has a low probability of transmission because it’s an outdoor activity where everyone is already wearing masks and goggles. Invest in top-grade equipment like a Giro ski helmet and goggles to enhance your comfort and safety, and as always, keep a safe distance from other skiers. If you must interact with others, stand at least six feet away from them, and make sure you’re both wearing masks. Condition your body properly before going as well – prioritize your core, quads, and hamstrings for increased stability.
If you’re going to do outdoor activities, then don’t miss out on your flu shots as well. It can help boost your immunity and help protect not just you but also those around you.
Do Some Fitness Activities from the Comfort of Your Home
Even before winter months hit, make sure your home is properly insulated and equipped for the harsh winter cold. It’s your first line of defence for making sure your home is a comfortable place to do exercise and fitness activities. Here are some activity ideas to help keep your body fit for the upcoming winter months:
These workouts provide a lot of physical and mental health benefits. It increases your flexibility, muscle tone, and strength, helps regulate weight, improves cardio, circulatory health, and athletic performance, and protects your body from injury. Since it involves a lot of stretching, it helps to flex and warm up the body’s various muscle groups. When you couple it with proper meditation and breathing exercises, it can also do the world of good for your mental and emotional health.
Zumba & Cardio Winter Workouts
If you want something more energetic and upbeat, taking an online Zumba or Bodyjam class can be a great way get yourself moving while having fun. These workout sessions make you feel like it’s a Saturday night out in the club without actually having to leave your home! Even a 30-minute session can help you torch a lot of calories, you learn how to dance, and it can improve your coordination and agility all in one go!
You can also use additional weight while working out, as this increases the calorie burn, intensity, and efficiency in a shorter amount of time. By using a weighted vest, you safely incorporate weight-bearing in your training routines. You can use it for intense Tabata sessions or easy stretching exercises. A weighted vest can be your secret weapon for weight loss. If you use it for running, it will dramatically improve your stamina. If you use it for walking, it will increase your endurance and body posture. There are plenty of options, choose what’s best for you. Now you have an even greater incentive to move your body and start burning calories!
Activity Games with Friends & Family
Play some games with your family, roommates, or pets. Even a simple yet energetic game night can get you moving around and burn some calories.