The nights are drawing in, it’s cold, wet and rainy, and the last thing you feel like doing when you get home from work is putting on your trainers and going for a run, but don’t despair! There are still plenty of ways to keep fit and healthy throughout the coldest season and burn off those extra calories.
Winter is a great time to make the most out of your local gym. While others are battling the rainy commute, you can be inside in the warmth listening to music and pounding the treadmill. Now might be a good time to try a new, fun class like zumba, body pump or spinning.
If you don’t fancy signing up for a full year’s contract, opt for a gym that offers you a monthly, rolling membership which may work out less expensive in the long run. Or check out your local authority gym where you can often just pay for the session you are attending without signing up. Swimming is great exercise all year round. Who cares about the rain when you’re going to get wet anyway?
Visit your local community centre or college and see if they hold exercise classes in the evening. Some will hold a weekly dance or fitness class or you might want to try your hand at martial arts or join a team sport like five-a-side football. Yoga or pilates is a great way to tone your body and relax your mind and you can practice them at home as well.
Whatever the weather, wrap up warm and enjoy the outdoors with a bracing walk. Watch the changing seasons and remember the fun of kicking leaves and collecting conkers as you explore your local woodlands or park. As the winter continues enjoy the breathtaking scenery as the countryside is blanketed by snow and ice.
If you’re feeling a bit adventurous, why not check out your local ice rink? It might take you a few attempts before you’re ‘dancing on ice’ but it’s a great way to have fun while exercising.
If you would rather stay indoors, why not rent an exercise DVD and enjoy training amid your home comforts? There are also some great computer games which will motivate you to exercise at home, such as those which use the wii fitness board, allowing you to track your goals and monitor your progress.
Keep your body healthy this winter by eating a balanced diet and taking advantage of the lovely seasonal vegetables around at this time of year. Pumpkins, parsnips and carrots make healthy, warming and low-calorie soups. Consider taking a daily multi-vitamin tablet to ward off colds and flu.
If you do come down with a cold it shouldn’t stop you exercising but take it easy and don’t exercise if you have a fever which can be dangerous. Likewise be carefully running outside in cold temperatures if you have asthma as it can trigger your symptoms. Make sure if you are running in the dark to wear reflective clothing and ideally run with a friend to stay safe.