Cold Weather Exercise

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Cold Weather Exercise

I am a wimp when it comes to the cold weather. As soon as the temperature drops below 50 degrees—I kiss my outdoor exercise options goodbye. Then I head for the warmth of my home or local gym to continue my pursuit of better health.

For those of you who do not have treadmills, stationary bicycles, and/or elliptical trainers available to you, getting some mid-winter cardiovascular exercise can be difficult. I have a few ideas for you that can keep your training consistent even as the temperatures outside are on the decline.

If you who enjoy walking when the weather is conducive, why not try mall walking? Arrive just as the mall opens in the morning or a half hour before it is set to close, lace up your trainers, and off you go. (This way you won’t get stuck weaving around slow moving people and baby strollers!) Malls across America provide great straight-aways, a climate-controlled environment, and are well lit and safe to boot. Who could ask for more?!

Another enjoyable form of cardiovascular exercise well-suited for the indoor arena is ball aerobics. The proper size exercise ball for you is one in which—when you are seated on it—aligns the height of your knee with the height of your hip (this positions your thigh parallel with the floor). Turn on some upbeat music and begin bouncing in the seated position. Add some varied arm movements, some weight shifting maneuvers, and viola, your heart rate will begin to rise.

Finally, incorporate non-traditional exercise by taking the stairs instead of elevators, cleaning your house in a “double-time mode”, or shopping the supermarket or big box stores with a quickened pace. Any way you can get your heart rate to rise (to the point where you’re breathing a bit heavier) and maintain it there for 15-30 minutes IS exercise. Your heart doesn’t know the difference, and your body remains the benefactor!

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