Long winters make staying in shape difficult, especially if you’re the kind of person who doesn’t like the gym. And for the Midwest (as well as other regions), this is a very long winter. So what do you do?
I’ve got a suggestion, and it’s going to sound pretty weird. But bear in mind, I do it, so you’re not alone. Here’s what I suggest to those who need a bit of low impact activity when it’s too cold to go outside:
Walk laps in your house.
I’m not kidding here. Whether your house is big or small, lengthy or not, you can make it work, even if you’re just walking circles around your kitchen.
I realize this sounds really boring, and it can be, but I suggest getting creative. I use audiobooks and walk around listening to them. That works pretty well for me. But you could also crank up the radio or your favorite workout music and move to that.
Now, family members might look at you like you’re a little crazy, but so what? You’re doing what works for you. If it really bothers you, try to find a time when you’re home by yourself and get walking.
Wear walking shoes, especially if your house is on a slab. With that many steps, your feet will really feel it if you try walking around bare foot or in socks, unless you’re used to walking long distances that way.
If you’d like to add a little resistance training, use hand weights, such as Stott Pilates Mini Hand Weights. If you don’t have anything like that, you could try holding cans of soup or something else that weighs a bit and easily fits in your hands. For weights that also serve as maracas to shake to the music, check out Zumba’s 1lb or 2.5lb Toning Sticks. I tried carrying Ginny around with me once, but that was a bit much. She’s small for her age, but not that small.
Resistance training won’t add much to your calorie burn or step count, but its good for giving your metabolism a kick. This is especially helpful if your weight loss has reached a plateau. The combination of cardio and resistance training should get your scale moving in the right direction again…assuming you’re not overeating to appease the winter blues.
Did I mention that getting active relieves stress and helps you feel better? Put down the nutella and pick up the hand weights. Trust me…when the colorful, light weight, and a bit unforgiving spring clothes come out, you’ll be happy you did.