Have a Blast — and Blast Calories — With Fun Winter Activities

After a brief warm spell melted most of the snow here in Detroit, winter has returned with a wallop to Michigan, delivering a powerful reminder that Old Man Winter isn’t done with us yet. But just because it’s cold and white out doesn’t mean you have to hibernate like a bear. In fact, making the best of this long season can be a fun way to burn calories.

The following are some fun activities you can do in the snow and outside throughout the winter, all while zapping calories. The figures are based on a 30-minute time frame and for someone who weighs 150 pounds:

  • Building a snowman — 142 calories burned
  • Cross country skiing — 387 calories burned
  • Ice skating — 171 calories burned
  • Making snow angels — 107 calories burned
  • Skiing or snowboarding — 198 calories burned
  • Sledding — 198 calories burned
  • Snowball fight — 160 calories burned
  • Snowblowing — 148 calories burned
  • Snowmobiling — 117 calories burned
  • Snowshoeing — 250 calories burned

You can look up how many calories you burn from many different exercises based on your weight as well. Winter is not a time for hibernation, so keep moving and play together as a family.

What to Wear Outside

When playing outside during colder temperatures here are a few tips to keep you warm:

  • Protect your extremities first: hands, feet, ears,  and your nose. These are most susceptible to frostbite due to the wind and cold.
  • Don’t overdress. Too much sweat when you are outside in the cold can be uncomfortable and can make you feel colder in the long run. You want to be warm, without being hot. Layers are your friend in cold weather.
    • The layer closest to your body should be silk or something that will wick away sweat
    • You also want lightweight, breathable apparel under your coat, so your sweat evaporates. Clothing made of Capilene or polar fleece work well.
    • Lastly, the outermost layer should repel snow and water.

One of my favorite tricks, on a very cold day, is to throw my clothes into the dryer for a few minutes before I put them on and leave the house. So embrace the beautiful four seasons in Michigan and go play in the snow!

Indoor Workout at Home

If being active outside during the cold season is not for you, remember you can always do a home workout. Here are some of my favorite workout videos at various fitness levels:

Beginner:

Leslie Sansone’s Walk at Home

Yoga for Beginners

Intermediate:

Bob Harper’s Pure Burn Super Strength

So You Think You Can Dance Get Fit

Advanced:

P90X

Insanity

Do you have a favorite at home workout? Let me know if you try any of these. Whatever it is that you decide to try, make sure you get approval from your doctor and start slowly, so you know what fitness level you should be working in. Remember by getting active, you stay fit and this will help you live a healthier lifestyle for a lifetime.

Photo Credit:  Arkansas Shutterbug

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