The New Year is fast approaching and it’s time to make your New Year’s Resolutions. What are your resolutions going to be this year? For most people they include some sort of fitness pledge to lose weight, get in better shape, or just eat better. This year why not challenge yourself and achieve the goals you set. Just because it is winter outside doesn’t mean you have to stay indoors or wait for warmer weather to get in shape. Take advantage of these cooler months and enjoy the outdoors; there are plenty of activities to keep you active.
Snowshoeing is a great whole body activity to get your heart rate up and work on your overall conditioning, while enjoying the gorgeous view. If you are inexperienced at snowshoeing check with your local ski hills as they offer rentals and guided snowshoe tours. Some even offer a snowshoe tour plus fondue dinner after.
Cross country skiing is another great activity to get your heart rate up and improve your cardiovascular conditioning. Your local ski hills offer rentals and lessons for those who are new to the sport or for those looking to improve their technique.
Downhill skiing and snowboarding are faster paced activities that will enhance your cardiovascular conditioning as well as your leg and core strength. If you have never tried either I strongly recommend taking a day of lessons to get the full benefit of the sport.
Tubing or tobogganing are great family activities to get outside and enjoy the fresh air. Most ski hills offer rentals and roped off areas to enjoy a day of tubing. The best part of spending an afternoon sliding down the snow-covered hills is hot chocolate afterwards.
Running clubs are still operating in the winter in most cities. Check with your local Running Room or online for more information about dates and times. For those looking for a challenge to start 2011 off the Running Room is hosting their annual Resolution Run on January 1st. It is a 5km walk/run and a great way to start off the new year. Check out www.runningroom.com for more details.
Trail running is a great activity all year round. Here on the west coast we tend to not have as much snow as the rest of the country, so the trails are more accessible. Check on-line for more information about trail running groups and dates available in your area.
Adventure Race Camp is for those looking for an adventurous vacation in a warmer climate. Experience the culture and people of Jalcomulco Mexico and get in shape at the same time. Check out the link for more info www.camp-frontier.com
Regardless of where you live there are plenty of activities to keep you active and in shape over the winter. I head out to the local mountains every week to get in a hike and enjoy the scenery. My hiking buddy and I have had quite a few enjoyable adventures this year already and we both look forward to the next hike. If you are planning a trek outdoors, remember to dress in layers appropriate for the weather conditions, to bring extra energy snacks and plenty of water. And if your hike doesn’t involve a guide, make sure you let someone know where you are planning to go and remember to stay on marked trails. Take advantage of the outdoor winter activities this year and jumpstart your New Year.