The amount of winter fitness activities available are so numerous that it would be difficult to list them all. Some are obvious—skiing, snowboarding, ice skating—while some are a little more unique—snowga, igloo building, paragliding and winter golfing.
But when the weather doesn’t lend to outdoor adventures, it’s time to look inside for creative ways to keep active and healthy. Many local golf and athletic clubs and sports centers provide a boatload of indoor and outdoor ways to stay active all year.
But what about those who are less adventurous?
How about professionals who have very little time to spare?
What are the options for individuals who tend to be homebound with families and obligations?
These are the questions that I posed to the experts to identify how we can all stay active indoors. Here’s what they recommend:
Do Chores: “Consider movement that takes place when completing daily and weekly chores or tasks that we might otherwise simplify or delegate,” suggests Nicole Guerton, board-certified wellness coach. Chores like sweeping, vacuuming, straightening up the office, cleaning out the supply room or picking up debris around the office, or if the weather permits, moving snow, not only make us feel better about our spaces, but have positive health impacts. “These types of tasks all include various intensities of physical activity and are classified as N.E.A.T.—non-exercise activity thermogenesis,” explains Nicole.
Execute Bursts:“A great way to get your heart rate up when stuck inside is to do little bursts of exercise,” recommends Kate Egan, Dietician and Health Coach. “Challenge yourself to a minute of jumping jacks, pushups or walking lunges every hour to improve your fitness and keep your blood flowing.” You can even do these in your office, or in a conference room or as a group to keep everyone healthy in your workplace. One ideal piece of workout equipment is always available whether you’re stuck at home or the office—the stairs. Skip the elevator and if you’ve got groceries to tote, you’ve got your own set of weights. “Even making a few extra trips up and down your apartment or house stairs can make a difference.”
Take Classes: Thanks to technology there are still plenty of ways to participate in exercise programs when you’re stuck inside. “Several of my clients have used YouTube to find exercise videos or borrow DVDs from their local library,” says Nicole. You can find a variety of styles and intensities of exercise along with a range of durations to fit into your busy schedule.
Utilize Experts:Find a personal trainer or exercise specialist who will design a home exercise program specifically for you and the equipment, time, goals and budget you have. This is also a great option for those with special needs or limited abilities. According to Nicole, “Hiring a personal trainer or exercise specialist is a great option for someone who has motivation to exercise but needs to add a little variety or structure to their home program.” Investing in expert resources allows you to also design something that you can use in the workplace, on your lunch hour or breaks so that you are targeting all your physical needs within the space and time options available to you. Finally, experts like Nicole and Kate offer virtual coaching options to help their clients nationwide not only create fitness and nutrition programs but consultation options to help keep their clients motivated, successful and healthy no matter what weather, time and physical obstacles come their way.
***Before experimenting with any exercises and nutrition tips posted on A Healthy Career, always consult with your physician, wellness or health practitioner.
Kim Monaghan, PCC, RYT, CPBS is the owner of KBM Coaching & Consulting LLC, a boutique Human Resources Consulting and Career Coaching Firm serving a national clientele.