This week, much of the country was in the grip of the Polar Vortex, which is really just meteorologic hyperbole for, “frigid circulating winds that escaped from the North Pole.” If Today Show weatherman, Al Roker has calmed down, we can all calm down. In fact, now that the weather is back to plain ole cold and snow, we say, “Get outside and get your cold-weather workout awwwn.”
During the winter it’s tempting to bundle under a warm blanket and reach for a bag of Cheetos. Don’t do it. Grab your snow boots and your mittens! We’re going to show you 9 ways you can burn major calories in the snow without having to pay for pricey equipment or ski rental fees.
Walk – The added resistance of the snow helps tone and firm muscles.
Snowball Fight – Squat to pick up and form snowball before launching at your target.
Shovel the Driveway – Just remember to stretch first, use proper form and take breaks.
Sledding – Choose a steep hill so the walk up burns more calories. Then, hop on your sled, throw your hands up and yell, “WEEE” all the way down.
Snow Parkour – Go for a jog but don’t gingerly side-step snow piles, instead, leap over, around, and if the snow is packed, jump right on top.
Build a Snowman – Classic! Don’t just build a snowman, build a snowman family. All that squatting, snow-rolling and packing is a great cardio workout.
Make a Snow Angel – Swinging those arms and legs can melt up to 214 calories per hour.
Sort’ve Skiing – Sure, cross-country and downhill skiing burn calories like crazy but walking in long shuffle strides through the snow works too.
Side-Shuffle – In moderate to light snow, stand with knees slightly bent, slide right leg away from the body, then use inner thigh muscles to slide your left leg toward right. Repeat and feel the burn.
Snow Fun Safety Tips
- Wear eye protection – Snow is a powerful UV reflector and “snow blindness” is a serious condition.
- Drink plenty of water. It may be cold but your body still needs it. Every day. Always.
- Wear light layers that resist wind and moisture.
- Don’t forget the SPF. If it’s sunny, you can still burn.
- Watch for ice patches. Playing in the snow = fun. Playing on the ice = a trip to the ER.
- Be aware of chest pain and shortness of breath, which could be signs of a heart attack.
January 10th, 2014