Active Life: Fitness need not hibernate during winter

NANAIMO – Struggle to maintain level of physical activity during winter months.

By Tammy Toor

Whenever we turn the clocks back and the darkness of the day descends upon us earlier, I always struggle with myself to maintain the level of physical activity I did so willingly in the spring and summer.

I admit it: when evening comes, I just want to spend my time snuggled up under a blanket while sitting in my La-Z-Boy.

I have learned that the fall and winter shouldn’t be a time to let our fitness routines hibernate – especially with all of those holiday treats soon to be tempting us at every turn.

By changing our mindset and getting a little creative, we can ensure our fitness and health remains a priority now and in the months ahead.

Here are a few tips that may help you:

Change your perspective – Instead of coming up with the excuses not to exercise, I try to remember how important it is and how good I always feel afterwards.

It keeps me healthy – physically and emotionally, and I am trying to set a good example for my family.

Try something new – Parks, Recreation and Environment has programs for every age and ability. Try a new yoga class or other fitness class. How about attending our free Lions Skate held every Sunday at Frank Crane Arena?

Get creative at home – Sure, going outside or to the gym can be inconvenient, but you can always do a workout at home. Invest in a few pieces of fitness equipment like hand weights or fitness bands, and you are set. Try doing some exercises or stretches during the commercial breaks of your favourite TV show.

Buddy up – If you can’t seem to muster the energy to workout by yourself, make a commitment with either a friend, family member or even the family dog. You’re a lot more likely to follow through on your workout commitments when you know others will be with you.

Set a goal – Choose a goal that you really want to achieve that will keep you motivated. How about getting in your 10,000 steps every day for three months or running a five-kilometre race?

Looking for some ways to stay active? Check out the Fall and Winter Activity Guide or visit our website at www.nanaimo.ca for ways to keep you and your family active and healthy this season.

Tammy Toor is a communications specialist with parks and recreation.

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