MU Extension MU Extension       University of Missouri    ●    Columbia    ●    Kansas City       Missouri S&T     ●    St. Louis - Food and Fitness


Feature Articles: Exercise


Keeping Fit When Weather Keeps You In  


Linda Rellergert, Nutrition Specialist in St. Charles County
University of Missouri Extension




When the weather outside is frightful, you may be tempted to stay curled up inside by the fire rather than brave the elements for the sake of fitness. Staying active is too important for health to wait until the spring thaw. Try some of the following suggestions to have a more active lifestyle, whatever the weather.

Fit in several short fitness breaks throughout the day.
Health experts recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of movement on most days, but that time can be broken into shorter segments. Try a couple of 10 to 15 minute periods a day and vary the activities. For example, take a stretch break instead of a coffee break at work. Or use household chores like vacuuming or dusting as an opportunity to move vigorously. Get to work just 5 minutes early or stay just 5 minutes late to use the time to walk inside or out.

Explore new activities.

If the cold weather keeps you from participating in your usual activities, view this as a good opportunity to try something new. Include a mix of aerobic, flexibility and strength training activities. Try mall walking; indoor swimming or other water activities; sign up for Tai Chi; or take dancing lessons. Treat yourself to a new aerobic dance video, or look for a yoga program on TV. Join or start a church or community-based sports team. Look into joining the YMCA or other community fitness program.

Buy a piece of exercise equipment.
A treadmill or stationary bicycle may be just the ticket for keeping you moving and motivated. Learn as much as you can before shopping, and consider purchasing gently used equipment rather than new. Try listening to music or books on tape or CD, watching TV, or reading a good book while on the treadmill or bike to keep your mind occupied and make the time fly. You won't want to stop!




Last update: Tuesday, May 05, 2009








University of Missouri logo links to

Site Administrator:
Copyright  ADA  Equal Opportunity

MissouriFamilies is produced by the College of Human Environmental Sciences,
Extension Division, University of Missouri