Fit, Ripped and Fabulous

When winter rolls around, people tend to spend more time indoors than outdoors. This results in a rather inactive lifestyle.

If exercise is the key to improving your quality of life, how can you be successful at it during the winter months, when even such minimal tasks as taking out the rubbish seem difficult, due to the weather?

Here are some suggestions for you:

• If you live close to a mall or shopping centre, head over with your walking shoes and take a stroll. Get a group of your friends together to make it a more social activity.

• If walking is not your cup of tea, but swimming is and you have access to a local community pool, then take the plunge. Many think swimming is an activity for the warm, summer months, however, a number of local fitness centres have indoor heated pools for those who enjoy swimming all year round.

• If the winter weather is too bad for getting out of the house, consider purchasing exercise equipment for your home.
There is a wide variety of equipment available on the market today: stationary bicycles, stair-stepping machines, weights, skipping ropes and treadmills.
Since some equipment can be expensive, look out for sales in the newspaper.
With your own equipment you have the comfort and convenience of your own home in which to exercise. All you need is to set it up in front of the television or a window, put on your favourite show or watch the sights outside and exercise away.

• Make extra trips up the stairs.

• Park further away from your destination.

• Turn on some lively music and dance while you vacuum.

• Do not just sit while watching TV, use this time to lift weights, do stomach crunches or something that will build muscle or burn calories.

• Running or walking can be invigorating.

Dress in layers of breathable clothing to provide insulation that can be adjusted as you get warmer. Do not forget to drink water.
You may want to warm up indoors if you can. Do a little exercise to increase your body temperature, and then go outside.
Vary the types of exercise to help maintain your enthusiasm. For example, walk on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Then try cycling or skipping on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. Set your goals so that they are achievable. If they are too high you might get discouraged and give up.