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10 ways to exercise this winter

Published in Weight Management, For the Health of It Author: John Inkster, MS

Do you feel the need to load up on carbohydrates and hunker down in your home when the weather gets cold? Don’t let winter zap your energy — try some of these ideas to get you out of hibernation mode:

  1. Walk or bike. Walking is great exercise for almost everyone. Walking outside is OK, even in the cold, but safety is key. You can wear studded shoe tracks and use walking poles to help. If you don’t like to walk out in the cold, find an inside track or shopping center. While people have often put away their bike in the winter, there are now ways to continue biking such as plowed bike trails, fat-tire bikes and bicycle trainers you can set up inside.
  2. Ice skate, snowshoe or ski. Bundle up and enjoy the beauty of winter in Minnesota. Get together a group of family or friends to multiply the fun.
  3. Geocaching. Go on a high-tech treasure hunt with a GPS or smart phone. This is a great activity to teach kids problem-solving skills.
  4. Yoga or Pilates. Keep muscles limber and reduce stress with yoga. Build strong core muscles with Pilates. You can take a class do it at home.
  5. Swim. Did you know that swimmers tend to live longer and have better moods than people who do not exercise?
  6. Bowl. Socialize and exercise at the same time at your local bowling alley.
  7. Exergames. Video games game systems (like Nintendo Wii and XBox Kinect) can have games that incorporate exercise. These may not have the same health benefits as playing the actual sport, but it’s better than sitting on the couch!
  8. Take the stairs. Use your breaks at work to climb the stairs for 10 minutes, three times a day.

    Are you a little more fit and ready to up your routine a bit? You could try:
  9. Trampoline park. Jumping at a trampoline park is a low impact way to burn a lot of calories and get your heart pumping. Remember to follow the safety rules! 
  10. Indoor rock climbing. If you are not afraid of heights, this is a great way to build muscle and endurance.

Remember, anything is better than nothing, so every little bit helps beat those winter doldrums.