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By Rachel Colchamiro, Director of Nutrition – WIC Program

iceskIt’s December.  It’s cold…at least it’s getting there, anyway.  And it’s dark.  No wonder people have a hard time getting exercise at this time of year!

Staying physically active in the winter takes some effort for both me and my family.  Here are some of my go-to ideas.  Maybe you could get some inspiration or perhaps share your own ideas that keep you up and moving when the temperature goes down.

Keep walking or jogging outside!

  • Dress in layers and start with a pair of lightweight gloves to keep those hands warm. If it’s really cold, try wearing a scarf or mask loosely over your nose and mouth to limit your exposure to the frigid air. It’s a good idea to wear something with pockets so that you can stash extra layers once you start to warm up.
  • If you’re outside in those early morning hours (or let’s face it, any time after 4:30 PM) when it’s dark, stay safe with reflective clothing or tape so that others can see you.
  • Be careful of slipping if the ground is wet or icy. Wear shoes with lugged soles, use walking or ski poles, or experiment with slip-on cleats for extra traction.
  • Allow a little extra time to warm up…maybe up to 10 minutes. When it’s cold, your heart and muscles need more time to get ready.

Make it a family affair!

And of course, moving inside is always an option!  I recently got a nice workout when my daughter offered a dance class in our living room, and I’m pretty sure my husband broke a sweat during a Nerf gun/dodgeball battle with my 11-year-old in the basement.

So many fun ways to stay active while we wait for warmer weather and longer daylight hours!  What are your favorite things to do in the winter?

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