Three Reasons to Get Outside this Winter

Three Reasons to Get Outside this Winter
Claudette Pelletier-Hannah

Maybe you are a winter warrior. I’m certainly not. If there is one thing I’m not good at (there’s more than one) it’s getting outside in winter. Winter here can be very cold. But it can also be very beautiful with blue skies, sunshine that busts your eyeballs and reasonable temperatures.

I’m happy to announce that this winter I have taken advantage of the warmer temps to push my butt out the door. I have engaged in cross-country skiing, skating and just plain walking in the woods many times. And it feels good. My indoor life and workouts just don’t cover all the bases.

Whereas summer offers the opportunity to lie on a beach reading a book, if you’re going to be outdoors in winter you’ve got to be moving.

Here are three good reasons to get outdoors.

  1. It’s outdoors!! You get to breathe fresh air. There are trees, birds and diamond-like sparkles in the snow you just don’t fully experience from the kitchen window. It is well documented that being in nature relieves stress and promotes wellbeing. You feel alive when you’re outdoors in winter.
  2. You will have balanced fitness. Walking or running on a treadmill are not the same as walking or running on roads or trails. The same is true for riding stationary bikes versus road or mountain bikes. It takes a little more energy to exercise outdoors. Climbing a real hill with uneven terrain will make you better. And you’ll have more fun.
  3. Your attitude about winter might improve. You won’t resist, resent or recoil from winter so much. Those tensed up shoulders raised up beneath your ears just might relax. Waiting impatiently for winter to be over is no way to live happily, as it can be a long wait.

Yes, it’s easier to be active outdoors in the summer, but since when do we, in Edmonton, shy away from a challenge?