Snow Day Workouts

As told by Stephanie Davis, a Personal Trainer at the Southern Saratoga YMCA

Personally, I love, love, love snow days (when I do not have to drive in it, of course). It is great cross training. There are two things I look forward to when we get heavy snow:

Shoveling Snow

I truly enjoy shoveling the snow. Maybe it’s because I’m from the Gulf Coast, so it is still quite a novelty to me. However, it is an awesome workout for your back, shoulders, arms, legs, and core. Depending on your speed, you can get your heart rate into the aerobic zone easily, which is great for your cardio-pulmonary respiratory system. It should be done with some caution though.

Be sure to shovel using both sides of your body. Don’t shovel off to the same side the whole time. Use your legs in conjunction with your upper body as you bend, lift, and throw. You also have to know your limits, or at least respect where you are at in your fitness, as to whether or not you shovel gently or with a fitness zeal.

Stretching afterwards is very important. You’d be surprised at how tight and sore you can get.

Snow Walking and Running

You don’t have to have snow shoes to get outside and go walking! Personally, I like to go out in the backyard, or on the un-plowed sides of roads and walk/run through deep snow.

Days like tomorrow means, you’ll have a steady flow of fresh snow. It can be taxing, but it is a great way to get cardio in. Aim for 10-15 minute blocks of time so that you don’t overdo it. You’ll feel muscles that you may not even know you have! Nothing beats exercising outside. Nothing makes you feel more alive than fresh air.

Take caution if you walk on the road or sidewalks if there is ice. Be mindful of low temperatures. In low temperatures it can not only be painful to breathe, but it can be dangerous. If breathing in the cold air hurts your lungs, it is time to go back inside.

No gym necessary tomorrow!