Exercise During the Winter

Exercise During the Winter

Cold, snowy days and icy roads can make it difficult to get outside and exercise during the winter months, especially if you live in a Northern climate.  However, with a few tweaks to your usual routine, you can stay in shape despite the cold temperatures.  Here, learn about 8 tips for exercising during the winter season.

Invest in a Pair of Dumb Bells

You can complete a full workout with a set of dumb bells.  Do bicep curls, triceps extensions, squats, and military presses. Aim to complete three sets with 10-12 repetitions of each exercise per set.  Select a weight that is heavy enough that the last few repetitions are difficult to perform. Browse Shape.com to discover more exercises you can do with dumb bells.

Join a Gym or Fitness Center

It can be costly to join a gym or fitness center, but the cost is worth it if it keeps you healthy and away from the doctor’s office. Join a gym or fitness center close to home, and you can run on the track or use the pool, even when the ground is covered in snow.

Climb the Stairs

If there is a set of stairs in your house, they can provide you with the tools to complete a full workout. Climbing up the stairs is a total body workout. In fact, researchers for an April 2000 edition of Preventive Medicine found that climbing just 6 flights of stairs per day could reduce heart rate and increase levels of healthy HDL cholesterol among women who were previously sedentary.  Get a full workout and increase your calorie burn by challenging yourself to climb up and down the stairs 10 times at once. Do three sets of this workout in the same day to really challenge yourself!

Get a Dog

You may not think that getting a dog would make a difference to your exercise routine, but having a furry friend means you will have to go outside for walks.  It may not be fun to trample through the snow, but having a high-energy dog will require you to head outside for a daily walk, even if the weather is unpleasant.  Check the local animal shelter for an adoptable dog, and stick to high energy breeds like a Siberian Husky or an Australian Shepherd.

Use a Weighted Jump Rope

Jumping rope burns serious calories.  Jumping rope with a weighted rope increases your calorie burn even further, and it also strengthens and tones your arms. You can easily jump rope inside the comfort of your own home on a snowy winter day.  You can find a weighted jump rope at a mass merchandiser like Walmart or Target for under $20.

Take Up Downhill Skiing

Head to the slopes for some downhill skiing, and you can burn off major calories. In fact, a 130 pound woman will burn about 500 calories after an hour of downhill skiing.  When you are bundled up and having a blast, you won’t even notice the freezing temperatures!

Update Your Winter Wardrobe

You can beat the cold temperatures with spandex pants and warm running jackets.  It may still be freezing outside, but you will be more comfortable with the proper attire. Treat yourself to a few winter running outfits, and then head outdoors for some exercise. Promise yourself a hot bath after your workout is finished!

Attend a Group Exercise Class

Many gyms and fitness centers will allow non-members to attend group exercise classes on a drop-in basis for a small fee, typically around $5. If you can spare a $20 bill every month, you can attend one group exercise class per week without shelling out money for a full gym membership.  You can attend indoor classes such as yoga or power aerobics and still stay warm, even when it is snowing outside.

By attending group exercise classes and using the other tips discussed here, you can continue your exercise regimen and stay in shape during the winter months.  With some careful planning and a little extra effort, you can meet your fitness goals, despite the freezing temperatures.

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