Staying active and finding movement during the day can be especially hard when cold Midwest winters and temperatures push us indoors. However, opportunities for movement can always be found. Here are some activities you can seek out to stay active, even when it’s cold.
Longer daylight hours allow for more time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. Grab a sled or two and find a hill to go sledding. Snowshoes are also a fun way to go explore area trails. Popular winter activities like ice skating and cross country skiing can also usually be found if you do a little research. Even a brisk walk around where you live can be energizing and stress relieving; plus there’s no equipment required.
If something indoors is more your speed, fitness centers and recreational centers may be open with increased protocols to ensure cleanliness and safety. There are also numerous YouTube videos and online workouts to be found that can be done in a small space like a spare room.
With temperatures sometimes dipping into the negatives, there are some essential things to keep in mind when thinking about wintertime activities. First and most importantly is safety and awareness. You should always stay aware of the weather conditions and keep in mind frostbite times. Depending on the temperature and wind chill, frostbite can set in as quickly as 5-10 minutes. You should monitor and adhere to any cold-weather guidelines, watches, warnings, or advisories that are present. Beyond being aware, dressing appropriately for the activity with layers and covering exposed skin will keep students safe and warm.
Movement and activity are an important part of staying healthy and well. The CDC recommends adults get 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity 5 days a week. However, physical activity not only contributes to physical well-being; it has also been connected to resiliency and mental health. So this winter, try something new or revisit an activity you've loved in the past, and don’t let the cold stop you from being active.