If snowy days have kept you comfortably indoors, read on for a few fun and easy tips to wave goodbye to your winter weight.
Winter weight gain is a real phenomenon, even if you workout and maintain a healthy diet. Between bunking under the covers and camping out by the fireplace, people are naturally less active between November and the end of February. Cold weather coupled with several food-focused holidays leaves the average American more than a pound heavier by spring. Drop the extra weight and feel great about the upcoming swimsuit season with the following fun activities.
Go green in the garden
Most parts of the United States are ready for planting by the end of March through mid-April with a growing season that extends well into fall. Gardening is not only fun but can burn between 200 and 300 calories per hour or more. Additionally, growing fruits and vegetables at home is a great way to save money and add whole-food nutrition to your diet. Research suggests that a diet rich in a variety of colorful foods cannot only affect your waistline but can positively impact your mood, too. Eating healthy can help things like chronic pain and depression, so be sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
Take a hike
No matter where you live, there is a good chance that you are within easy access of ample recreational opportunities. Hiking, whether through a rugged landscape or a breezy lake side path, is another activity that kills calories and lifts your spirits. A two hour hike can burn up to 1,000 calories, depending on your weight and how steep the terrain. Hiking is a wonderful family activity that has the added benefits of getting you close to nature and helping you explore your world.
Tour your town
Warmer weather is a great excuse to head down to the closest metropolitan area and enjoy the sights and sounds. Most people who live in close proximity to large cities never take the time to appreciate the local charms that attract tourists every year. Walking burns calories and offers a gentle cardiovascular workout, which is good for your heart and overall health. Even if you don’t have kids, there are few things as fun or interesting as the zoo or at your local museum.
Catch your own dinner
While fishing may seem like more of a spectator sports, a summer afternoon casting along the river can burn more than 800 calories. Boaters expend an average of 102 calories an hour sitting in wait for their fishy fare to come along. Collect your own bait and easily shove off 200 calories for 60 minutes’ worth of worm foraging.
Image via Pixabay
Play a game
There are a ton of outdoor games that you can enjoy with the company of friends. An hour long game of badminton, for example, can knock off just under 300 calories while a more competitive tennis match can easily net a negative 600 calories in the same time frame. Even if chess is more your style, you have options for outdoor play. Many manufacturers offer giant lawn games, including chess, checkers, four in a row, and Jenga. Although these may not be the most active ways to enjoy the outdoors, you will certainly burn more calories than staring at each other across the kitchen table.
Learn to landscape
Even if you don’t want to plant a garden, you can still improve the appearance of your outdoor areas. Take an afternoon once a week to clean the yard, mulch flowerbeds, weed eat, and trim overgrown hedges. Each of these activities involves physical movement and will also leave you satisfied that you’ve done something for the day. More ambitious outdoor projects include building a swingset, edging, and raking fallen leaves – which can help you say goodbye to 400 calories an hour.
Image via Pixabay
The time has come to get out of the house and take back the positive feelings and benefits that come with being active. The winter is now far away, so you have plenty of time to prepare to make the next one a healthier one.
Featured Image: Pixabay
Header Image: Pixabay