“My favourite winter activity is going back inside & putting my pajamas on”
Happy Friday & Happy Holidays people, because today officially marks the first day of Christmas break for kiddos across Ontario!! Do you remember getting that rush at the 3pm bell?! Pure & utter bliss. But although kids near & far may be rejoicing, parents often dread having to keep up with their candy-cane, sugar riddled children for two straight weeks. I therefore wanted to put together a short list of fun, winter activities designed to not only keep the kids busy, but also tips on how to keep fit for the average person over the holidays! Not to mention that keeping a regular fitness schedule & engaging in winter related activities can help combat the “winter blues”! ENJOY!
My boyfriend & I recently went skating at Nathan Phillip’s Square & had the best time! Skating is a great way to keep up with your cardio, while strengthening your legs & glutes. The best part? Most outdoor skating rinks are 100% FREE. Check out Nathan Phillip’s Square downtown or the Richmond Green Skate Trail in Richmond Hill for free, fun, & festive activities! If you don’t live in the area, outdoor skating rink locations will typically be posted online for your region – you could also make your own, think of all the calories you’d burn in the process 😉
Some of my favourite memories as a kid involve tobogganing with my cousins at our grandparent’s farm up north. We would literally spend hours working on our masterpiece – “the hill”, complete with spotlights & a starting gate (we were pretty serious). Tobogganing is another great way to get outside & enjoy the fresh air, while squeezing in some cardio & a little leg strengthening at the same time; running up the hill to catch your next ride.. hello! You can find a list of the best tobogganing hills in Toronto here
Cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, snowboarding… the possibilities are endless! Plus, am I the only one that literally sweats profusely after a long day of snowboarding?! The morning after a day spent on the hill, my muscles are typically sore all over & I find myself craving a hot bath filled to the brim with Epsom salts… I’m also not exactly what you’d call a gifted snowboarder, if I’m able to get down the hill in one piece, I’ve accomplished a major feat. You can find a list of the top 10 ski destinations across Canada here
Okay so this one might be a bit of a stretch in terms of qualifying as a legitimate fitness activity, but it’s so FUN! Plus, you’re getting outside; which in all honesty is a huge accomplishment for kids in this day & age. Science Professor, Dr. Ronald W. Deitrick states that “your body has to work harder just to generate heat when you’re out in the cold. So exercising during the cold winter months can be more effective in burning calories than working out at the gym or in your home”. Essentially, building a snowman outside during the winter is better than nothing!
Last winter, my parents bought me pink snowshoes for Christmas… I’ve NEVER attempted snowshoeing before (I know, bad Canadian…), but when I finally strapped those bad boys on, I had so much fun! By the end of our snowshoe hike, I had to take my coat off because I was sweating like crazy! This is a fun & effective workout, not to mention it’s hilarious to watch everyone struggle during the first few steps!
** It’s important to note here, that all “calories burned” numbers are simply estimates, based on an average 150lb individual.