Thursday, October 13, 2011

Winter Past Times

Sadly, at least in Utah, summer is gone and winter is quickly approaching.  The temperatures have dropped, the jackets have come out and the mountains are capped with snow.  This is a sad time for me for several reasons.  First, all those fun summer activities are going to have to wait until next summer, I will soon have to wear 4 times as much clothing, My feet will always be wet,  I have to drive in the snow, and the worst is I will likely gain 30 pounds before it warms up again.

If you are like me winter takes it's toll in regards to my health, particularly my weight.  Not only am I bombarded by holidays that are accompanied by an over abundance of delicious treats but I become much more inactive as I don't really feel like going out into the freezing cold to get exercise and there seems to be much less one can do sports wise when there is several feet of snow on the ground.  Despite these unfortunate circumstances I plan on not letting my weight get out of control this year.  So I have decided on several winter past times that I will use to keep in shape and I will throw a few more out there that you could try.

This would have to be my number one winter past time.  Sorry skiers, I'm a boarder but both are excellent ways to stay in shape in the winter months.  Both sports work to keeps you physically fit in just about any way you could be fit.  The biggest drawback to this sport is that it can be really expensive and you usually have to travel to do it.  So when I can't go snowboarding my second favorite winter past time is

This is a sport that I have realized many people are not familiar with at least as a sport.  In reality snowshoeing is your winter alternative to hiking.  During the summer I love to hike which is where I get the majority of my exercise, so Snowshoeing is an excellent way to replicate this same activity in the winter months.  In many ways snowshoeing adds an additional sense of adventure to your hikes.  In the summer you generally have to stay on a trail but in the winter time the trails are not visible so you have open range to go wherever you want; however, be careful because getting lost is easy when you have no trail to follow so make sure you are keeping tabs on where you are going and how to get back to where yous started.  Snowshoes also make it possible to climb otherwise impassible hills, and to slide down those same hills which would probably kill me in the summertime.  SO in a nutshell I love snowshoeing and would recommend it to anyone.

Ah sledding.  The joy of winter as a child.  I remember staring out the window watching the snow fall waiting for it to get deep enough for me to be able to sled on it.   I'm not sure why but many adults abandon this pastime as they get older.  it is unfortunate really because sledding is awesome and it is a good workout.  Running back up that hill will give you more of a work out than any treadmill or elliptical ever could.  If you need an excuse grad the kids and take them to the nearest hill and sled.  You didn't regret it as a kid and you won;t regret it now. 

Ice climbing
Ice climbing is something I have never tried and don;t really have much of a desire to try but it is pretty sick watching guys do it.  basically the winter version of rock climbing, ice climbing is the process of climbing frozen waterfalls.  I have always been turned off by this sport because I have this horrible fear of a huge chunk of ice breaking off and taking me down with it.  but don;t let my fears scare you.  IF you are the adrenaline type you should probably try ice climbing and from what I hear you will love it.

ice skating
If the above sports are too extreme for you ice skating is always a calmer alternative.  In reality ice skating is as extreme as you make it but usually a nice stroll around the ice is a safe fun way to exercise when it's cold outside.

SO this winter get out and do something.  There is plenty to do to keep yourself fit so find a new hobby or resurrect an old one and if non of this appeals to you you can always go run on the old treadmill but don't be surprised if I think your lame.

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