How to Stay Active Year Round

I don’t know about you, but when fall and winter roll around I go into ultra hibernation mode: The decorative gourds come out, I squeal over my fashionable boots that I now get to traipse around town in, and being active in the outdoors just isn’t quite as high on my priority list. But here’s the thing: It should be. Being active in the outdoors year-round connects you with nature, changes up your hum-drum, gym-inspired, workout routines and, what’s more, it’s just plain fun! So, in an effort to help us both maintain our activity throughout the turkey-eattin’, pumpkin’ carving, present presenting gluttony of the season, I’ve come up with some ways to get you out and about even when there’s snow on the ground.

The Obvious

Join a Gym
Now, you may be thinking, “How does this help me stay active outside?” Well, if you’re anything like me, after the monotony of the gym for a couple of weeks I’m ready to change it up with a run outside, a hike into the mountains, or a climb on a nice, south-facing, wall.

When you’re at the gym, spend your time preparing for what you’re gonna do outside. Perhaps you’re a ski junkie and need to strengthen that core. Perhaps you’re a climber who wants to keep up with their grip strength. Whatever your passion may be, use the gym to keep you active and at the top of your outdoor game.

Pick Up a Winter Sport
Cross-country skiing, snowboarding, and ice-climbing are all sports that require massive amounts of strength, endurance, and dedication. This winter will be my first on the slopes and you best believe I’m stoked to have a new activity that will get me outside and up in the mountains each weekend. That being said, if you’re a hiker during the warm months then try snowshoeing when it gets cold. Rock-climbers can try ice-climbing, and cyclists may want to try tele-skiing.

The Not-So-Obvious

One of my best friends is  a wild and crazy triathlete. When she’s on the fence about a race or activity, she merely signs up for it, pays the cash, and then starts training. From what she tells me, signing up for an event far into the future commits you financially and you’re less likely to bail.

Sign-up for a marathon in the Spring. Sign up for an Ironman in Summer. Whatever you have to do to motivate yourself through the cold months. Just do it by putting your money where your mouth is

Accountability Buddies
There’s nothing like an accountability buddy to keep you rolling during the “off-season.” In fact, when it comes to my accountability buddies, there’s no such thing as an off season. They hike, bike, run, and climb. Not to mention, they’d ski and board everyday if they could.

Surround yourself with people who are just as invested at getting outside as you are and ask them to hold you accountable. You can make wagers like the following:

  • You don’t make it to the gym, then you owe your accountability buddy two drinks.
  • You bail on a weekend of skiing in the mountains, you’re paying for gas on the next trip.
  • You skip your morning run because it’s too cold. Your accountability buddy makes you run twice as far the next day.

Wagers are fun and they work, so makes them and stick to them.

Now stock up on that cold gear, buy some hand warmers, throw on your earmuffs and get out! You’ll be glad that you did.