As the cold weather finally sets in it’s easy to want to hibernate in the winter, but it can make the best of us a little stir crazy. Getting out and being active in the fresh air can really help beat the winter blues and keep you holding on until spring. Here are some activity ideas for you to try this winter.
Snowshoeing: Snowshoeing is a great way to have fun and gets that heart rate rising. If you don’t have snowshoes already there are places you can rent them to see if you like the activity first. Weston Ski Track rents snowshoes which you can take down one of their many trails, and they also offer lessons and feature a snow making machine. Brooksby farm in Peabody also offers rentals as well.
Skating: Whether you prefer hockey or figure skating, they each offer great benefits. Although it does require some skill it’s a fun activity to do with a partner of together with your family. Children can push milk crates to help them balance when they first start out. There are many local indoor skating rinks such as those located at Salem State, Hockey Town USA, or Redd’s Pond and Frog Pond for outdoor rinks.
Go for a walk: Although it’s often icy there are ways around that so you can still take a walk around your neighborhood. Try using removable grippers that you secure onto the bottoms of your feet like these so you can get out of the house and enjoy the beauty of the snow.
Cross country skiing: A true total body workout, the average 150 lb recreational skier can burn up to 612 calories an hour, even more if you weigh more or push the intensity. Locally many skiers use the bike path that runs through Marblehead and into Salem. You can also rent skis at Brooksby Farm, and if you like it but you’re on a budget you can always buy second hand skis.
Downhill skiing or Snowboarding: A very popular local winter pastime in Massachusetts, it’s fun for all ages. There are hundred of ski resorts throughout New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont but if you’re looking to stay local you might want to try Nashoba Valley or Wachusett Mountain. Did you know the Lynch/van Otterloo YMCA offers a ski program?
Sledding: A truly fun way to experience the snow and really get a workout charging up those hills. You don’t need to spend much either to have a good ride. Make sure the trail or hill you choose is safe for sledding and there aren’t any trees or poles to potentially collide with.
Playing in the snow: Whether you have kids or not playing in the snow can be fun! If you do have kids, it’s a great way to bond with them and stay active as a family. Try building a snowman, making snow angels, having a friendly snowball fight, or making an igloo.
I’d love to hear your ideas too! How do you stay active in the winter and stave off the blues?
In good health,
Ryan Healy, BS, NSCA-CSCS