Winter Doesn’t Have to Wreak Havoc on Your Workout Routine

By Rebecca Jones

With the temperature dropping daily and spring a long way off, many of our hanging up our running shoes and spending that extra hour a day curled up under a warm blanket. It is the time of New Year’s Resolutions however and the dreaded 10lb’s of holiday weight isn’t going to work itself off so here are a few ways that you can become a winter workout warrior and get your routine back on track before the next swimsuit season.

Be Flexible
With the colder weather and snow days ahead you may need to get a little more creative with your workout routine. Gray days and cloudy weather can zap some of the excitement out of your routine so look for new ways to get the workout in. Many gyms offer a 6 month membership allowing you to hit the treadmill until the weather warms. Also look for new classics that will peak your interest such as kick boxing or Zumba. You can even put in a serious workout from the warmth of your own house. Stock up on workout DVD’s and pop one in before your shower in the morning. If you don’t have 45 minutes to an hour to workout try doing exercises like lunges and arm dips during the commercial breaks of your favorite TV show. All of those little bouts of exercise can really pay off in the end.

Dress for the Weather
The winter cold doesn’t have to keep you inside but it does require the proper gear. Be sure to wear lots of layers to keep you warm. Just be sure to avoid cotton as it will soak up sweat too easily, polyester and wool are better options. Most importantly wear a hat and keep hands and feet warm. In freezing temperatures nearly half of your body heat is lost through your head so a wool cap can make a huge difference. When you are cold your body takes blood from, your extremities to keep your core warm. Counter this effect by wearing wool socks and gloves. With the proper wardrobe it is safe to exercise outside in well below freezing weather. Just be sure to stay hydrated, drinking water is just as important in the cold as it is in the heat of summer.

Make it a Family Affair
Still not feeling motivated? You don’t have to go for a run to get in an outdoor winter workout, there are several activities that you can enjoy with your family while burning serious calories. From sledding to ice skating even the dreaded snow shoveling all burn about 500 calories an hour the equivalent to walking 5 miles. So bundle up and get it out there, it will be spring before you know it.