Winter Workout and Diet Tips for Every Day of the Week

It’s ironic that at the time of year when people are resolving to get fitter and lose those holiday pounds, we’re more tempted to sit under a blanket on the couch, watch movies, and eat comfort food. But when you don those layers of workout clothes and head outside for a run or workout, your…

Published January 13, 2012 2:35 PM
3 min read

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It’s ironic that at the time of year when people are resolving to get fitter and lose those holiday pounds, we’re more tempted to sit under a blanket on the couch, watch movies, and eat comfort food. But when you don those layers of workout clothes and head outside for a run or workout, your body reaps the rewards of sunshine, Vitamin D, increased calorie burn, and a better night’s sleep. Here are a few tips to help you get going.

By Lee Sandford

It’s ironic that at the time of year when people are resolving to get fitter and lose those holiday pounds, we’re more tempted to sit under a blanket on the couch, watch movies, and eat comfort food. But when you don those layers of workout clothes and head outside for a run or workout, your body reaps the rewards of sunshine, Vitamin D, increased calorie burn, and a better night’s sleep. Here are a few tips to help you get going.

1 Wear reflective gear

Daylight hours are short and roads in Rye are narrow and dark – stay safe by wearing plenty of reflective gear. The Rye Running Company has a large range of gear that will keep you visible – from a clip-on light for $3, to a fluorescent vest for $25, or great reflective jackets by Brooks and North Face ranging from $100 to $160.

2 Dress in layers

You’ll warm up quickly, so dress in wicking layers, avoiding cotton, which stays wet next to your body. My favorite items of clothing for gym are natural fibers. I find that they are worth the investment as they last much longer than man-made wicking fabrics, which after a short time never smell fresh again even when laundered! I wear a fine silk or merino layer next to the skin and merino wool layers after that.

Parkers on Purchase Street has these types of wool layers on sale right now (up to 40% off), and they’re also great for skiing and sledding without that bulky feel.

3 Protect your hands, face, and feet

When it’s cold, blood flow is concentrated on your body’s core, leaving hands and feet vulnerable to frostbite. Try wearing a thin pair of gloves under a pair of heavier ones or mittens lined with wool or fleece. I love getting to wear thick socks in the winter, because as well as their warmth, the extra cushioning makes pounding the pavement more comfortable. Wear a hat or headband to protect your ears, which also are vulnerable to frostbite. Remember sunscreen and sunglasses to protect against the low winter sun.

4  Take your time warming up

The science here is intuitive — it takes longer for your muscles to warm up in the cold. Take it easy when you start out.

5  Pay attention to weather conditions and have a back-up plan

Sometimes the wind-chill or ice makes it unwise to exercise outdoors. Your back-up plan is to not give up! Work out in the gym or at home to a DVD or take a look at my do-anywhere workout on my blog, RyeBootCampbytheBeach.com.

6  Take a shower before running errands

If you head straight to the freezer section at the store after a workout, you’ll quickly regret it and will feel chilled until you’ve made in home to shower. Go ahead and treat yourself to feeling clean and warm before you start racing around for your
busy day.

7  Find some healthy comfort food options

Mac ‘n’ cheese and fondue aren’t the only comfort foods out there. Turkey chili with plenty of beans and veggies is tasty, nutritious, and low-calorie — if you skip the sour cream and cheese! Or try having “soup night” once a week. I recommend taking a look at the NewCoventGardenSoup.com, a successful British fresh soup company that shares recipes and tips and runs soup-of-the-month competitions.

Wishing you health and happiness in 2012.

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