I’m not sure what kind of weather you have in your area, but here in Toronto, although it’s spring, it’s been snowing! So in case you’re still experiencing chilly temperatures or you’ve yet to lose the winter weight, check out this post by guest blogger, JT.
In many areas of the country, winter means lots of parties, hearty foods and hot, high-calorie beverages employed to keep away the chill of the season. All of these are things that, though awesome, tend to wreak havoc on waistlines. But that’s okay; since it’s winter, the bad weather makes it less practical to indulge in outdoor calorie-burning activities such as biking, walking and running.
There’s a problem here.
Yes, welcome to the winter of our discontent, where more opportunities to eat and less opportunities to exercise provide a devastating one-two punch to our attempts to stay healthy and fit, making it tougher to fit into those spring and summer clothes. The only other explanation is that many people’s clothing mysteriously and spontaneously shrink during the winter months.
No? Not buying that? Perfectly understandable.
Exercising Your Options
For people who are watching their weight and trying to stay fit, colder weather provides a daunting task. This proves especially difficult for fitness buffs that are accustomed to getting their exercise outdoors. They have to somehow switch gears during the inclement weather months and move their exercise routines indoors, to gyms for instance.
Naturally, there are those hardy souls who try to keep exercising outdoors in the cold. You can see them, running in the freezing weather along the side of roads already made narrower thanks to snow banks created by snow plows. Seeing these hardy souls elicits one of two reactions:
- That’s some impressive dedication and discipline! Way to go!
- Are you out of your freaking mind?
For the saner contingent of fitness buffs, it’s a matter of either slogging to the gym, or trying to at least fight a holding action and wait out the winter until the weather turns nice again and outdoor activities can resume.
Here are some suggestions for sloughing off some winter weight gain:
Find a Kindred Spirit. Knowing that you’re not alone in the fight for fantastic fitness is a good morale boost. Whether it’s a close friend, co-worker, or significant other, the task becomes easier if you can get a partner. A partner provides accountability, encouragement and sometimes even some good-natured competition.
Exercise Without Leaving Your Chair. A pound of muscle burns more calories to maintain itself than a pound of fat does. Get some hand weights and take 15-20 minutes a day to work on your arms and upper body, gradually changing that fat to lean, efficient, fat-burning muscle.
Pay Attention To What You Eat. The beauty of many weight-watching programs out there is that they force you to consider what it is you’re putting into your body. Even if you don’t end up following the programs completely, use them as a good tool to develop the habit of food consumption awareness.
Walk. Finally, consider just plain walking. Done regularly, walking does a body good. Okay, so you can’t slap on running shorts and head out to the bike path. Bundle up and consider taking a walk several times a week. All those miles add up.
About the Author
JT is a freelance writer who enjoys eating, running, writing about both of them, and online reputation protection. The more he eats, the more he has to run.
Thanks to being more careful of what and how much I’m eating, as well as regularly being just a bit more active, I’m happy to report I’ve shed over 12 pounds of the weight I put on over the last year and a half! Do you have any successes or goals to share?