It can be tough to stay physically active during the cold winter months. Not only can the colder temperatures be offputting, but schedules are busy! Plus, it can be tempting to cuddle up and spend all your free time cozied up by the fireplace or on the couch.
But staying active is important for staying healthy. Here are some tips to make physical activity easier and more enjoyable during this chilly time of year.
How to Stay Active During Cold Winter Months
1 – Use Daylight Hours
The days are shorter during the winter, meaning it gets dark outside faster. Try doing most of your physical activity while it’s still light out. It’s not only safer, but it’s easier to be active and get motivated when you can still see the sun in the sky.
2 – Create a Home Gym
Set up a makeshift workout area in a part of your home that has ample space. This could be a living room, spare bedroom, basement, or even a back porch. Use this space to bring out any workout equipment such as a stability ball, free weights, resistance bands, etc. If you don’t have any workout equipment, you can use your body weight to do strength-based exercises. Cardio workout ideas include jumping rope, jumping jacks, running in place, or side-hopping.
3 – Find a Fun Outdoor Activity
Switch up your workout routine and add some fun activities like hiking, sledding, building a snowman, walking to look at holiday lights, or having a snowball fight with your family. Here are some other outdoor ideas:
- Taking the dog for a walk or playing fetch
- Making a snow angel
- Going on a nature walk
- Easy outdoor sports like tennis or basketball
- Ice skating on a frozen lake or an indoor arena
4 – Be Productive at Home
Staying active doesn’t have to involve a traditional workout. You can stay active by keeping up with household chores like vacuuming, shoveling snow, dusting and sweeping, preparing your garden for the spring, or organizing your stuff.
5 – Wear the Right Clothes
Being comfortable in the cold weather is all about layering up and staying insulted. Your must-haves should include a warm pair of socks, insulated sneakers, sweaters and/or jackets that keep you warm but also protect you from the elements, a hat or beanie, and maybe a scarf.
6- Take Care of Yourself
Don’t neglect the basic tenants of good health such as staying hydrated, getting quality sleep, regularly eating nutritious meals, and managing stress. Prioritizing self-care will help you stay energized, motivated, and healthy.
It’s important to stay active on a regular basis, even during the long winter months when it’s cold outside. Physical activity can also help you to prevent getting sick during cold and flu season, as long as you stay safe and find ways to accommodate your needs.