Getting outside and experiencing nature, or at least some fresh air, is one of the most enjoyable ways to get your exercise. The benefits of outdoor exercise go beyond enjoyment, too: all things being equal, you’ll get a better workout. Now that the weather has turned cold, though, it might seem like enjoying the outdoors is much harder if not impossible. But we’re happy to tell you that’s not true: whether you have snow to play in or not, there are plenty of ways to get out and get active this winter.
Take a Snow Day
Let’s get it out of the way: yes, playing in the snow provides some of the best winter-only activities you can find. If you’re lucky (or unlucky) enough to live in a snowy area, take advantage of it! Visit a ski slope if you’re feeling adventurous: rent a pair of skis, or even a snowboard, and carve your way through the powder. Calories burned while skiing or snowboarding can be up to 500 calories per hour, which is three times the amount of calories burned while walking.
Less intense forms of snow exercise include snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, which allow you to take in the beauty of the snow-covered wilderness at a more leisurely pace. There’s also, of course, the snow day fun you can have in your own yard: building snowmen, sledding, snowball fights – all the stereotypical Christmas movie activities are old hat for a reason: they’re really fun! Remember to layer up for warmth! Z-CoiL’s plush and warm Comfort Socks are perfect for keeping your toes toasty. We also suggest our tall and comfortable workboot to keep the snow out and maintain ankle support during those intense snowball battles.
Work Up a Sweat
If you don’t expect to see snow this winter, don’t fret! There are still some great ways to stay active and get outside despite the cold. One thing you may have noticed before is how much warmer you feel when running: a good rule of thumb is that it will seem about 20 degrees warmer than the actual outside temperature once you’re in your exercise groove. This means you’ll want to dress in easily removeable layers so you can stay comfortable. The right footwear is always important, too: with a pair of pain-relieving running shoes like the Z-CoiL Freedom Classic, the miles will fly by.
As long as you’re dressed appropriately, jogging is still a great option in the cold. Winter hiking can be a beautiful experience as well: the trails are less crowded, and you’ll see a different side of the landscape, and maybe some different wildlife, than what you’re used to in the warmer months. Our sturdy and supportive Hiker boots are perfect for trail treks year-round. Remember, though, that the cold can creep up on you, especially if it’s windy. These cold weather exercise safety tips are great to keep in mind, but the same rules as always apply: dress in layers, stay hydrated, and don’t push yourself too hard.