Spring into Fitness by Steph Beth Nickel
While Europe has been buried under mounds of snow, Ontario has been experiencing an unseasonably warm February. The spring flowers, the chirping birds, and the increasing warmth bring a smile to many faces.
In addition, the idea of spending more time outside becomes more appealing. (Kudos to all of you spend time skiing, skating, and snowshoeing outdoors in the winter!)
How can we take advantage of the warmer weather and less treacherous conditions? How can we spring into fitness? (Pun intended.)
Throw open the windows and let in some fresh air.
While it may not be warm and dry enough outside to go for a hike, it’s always nice to air out our home in the late winter / early spring. It can also make it more pleasant as we exercise indoors. Fresh air (and the chirping birds) can also have a big impact on our emotional and mental wellbeing.
Investigate local hiking trails and more.
This is a good time of year to investigate opportunities for outdoor activities. Local hiking trails. Recreational sports leagues. Even challenges like the 5K Foam Fest. (It sounds like so much fun!)
Grab a friend (or a camera) and go for a walk outside.
Here in southwestern Ontario, the sidewalks are clean and clear and the weather is getting nicer. It has even begun to stay light longer. It’s a good time to get into the habit of walking / running outdoors. As the weather improves, we’ll be ready to travel longer and longer distances. With a camera in hand or a friend to talk to, it may not even feel like exercise.
Prepare your gardens for planting.
While it is still a little early for extensive gardening, there is always lots to do to get things ready. And anyone who spends a significant amount of time keeping their property looking nice knows how much physical exertion it takes.
Have an indoor backup plan.
When you look out the window and discover it’s pouring—or the snow is falling—the temptation may be to say, “I’ll get some exercise tomorrow.” However, there are several options for exercising indoors and it’s always good to have a backup plan. I’ve discovered Body Groove and love it.
Maintain your gym membership.
While there are those who are disciplined and maintain a regular workout schedule no matter where they are, some people do better if they’re paying membership dues. Signing up for a class or some personal training sessions increases the level of accountability, which is what some people need to stay active.
Track down some new recipes to try.
Staying active isn’t all we need to get healthy. Eating well plays a big role in fitness. In the next little while farmers’ markets will be opening again. This is a good time to accumulate a file of new recipes you’d like to try, ones that include the seasonal fruits and vegetables and other treasures you’ll find at the market.
How do you spring into fitness?
Before changing your activity level, exercise routine, and/or eating habits, consult your health care professional. What is safe and beneficial for one person can be harmful for another. Note that you implement the information in this post at your own risk.