Did you create a New Year’s resolution on January 1st? Did you resolve to lose weight or get in better shape? Would you like to find new and creative ways to exercise this winter that don’t involve running on a treadmill or going to the gym? If you want to add a little excitement to your exercise routine consider the winter sports and activities listed below. You are guaranteed to burn calories and have fun.
When that big blanket of snow falls in your neighborhood grab a sled and head for the biggest hill you can find. Most of us remember sledding as a carefree activity full of fast runs and big screams, but the truth is you can burn quite a few calories trudging back up to the top of your mini-mountain. If you have young children you’ll burn even more calories pulling them back up hill over and over again.
2. Downhill Skiing and Snowboarding
Are you looking for a new way to exercise that is fast paced and thrilling? Do you live within driving distance of a ski resort? If the mountains aren’t too far away consider a jam-packed day of downhill skiing or snowboarding. Skiing and snowboarding provide great lower body workouts. You will work your thighs, quads, glutes and hamstrings all while exploring trails and enjoying the scenery. As you rush down the mountain with the sound of wind in your ears you won’t even realize that you are exercising.
3. Ice Skating
When was the last time you strapped on skates and hit the ice? If it’s been more than a decade or two you’ll definitely want to approach this activity a little slower than some others, but with a little practice you’ll find yourself skating around the rink and feeling in the groove. If this is your first time out on the ice consider taking an introductory lesson or skating with someone who can hold your hand and guide you. Ice skating provides a great cardio workout all while improving your balance.
If you enjoy hiking throughout the spring and summer months consider strapping on some snowshoes and heading out for a great cardiovascular workout. Snowshoeing is a sport best enjoyed in the company of others so grab a friend, a neighbor, your significant other or even your children. You can find a wide range of snowshoes for men, women and children at REI and right now REI members can save 20% off one full priced item. While you are checking out the inventory don’t forget to search for snowshoe poles. They can help you maintain balance in thick snow and provide an extra workout for your upper body.
5. Snow Day Activities
When your children get a snow day from school grab your coat, put on your gloves, bundle up and join them in the backyard. You can spend hours building large snow forts, creating tracks in the snow, building giant snowmen, carving out snow angels and throwing snowballs. You’ll get a workout from lifting snow, running around the backyard and just trying to keep up with your little ones.
If you need a change from the typical gym routine try one of the activities listed above. You will have so much fun you won’t even believe you are exercising.