Whether it’s a scenic hike or a run in the park, being outdoors makes exercise way more fun. But sometimes—in the dead of winter—indoor workouts are the only option. Instead of resigning yourself to a smelly, poorly lit gym, try these six indoor activities that will get your heart rate up without giving you frostbite.
6 Actually Fun Ways to Work Out Inside During the Winter
Because it's too damn cold out
Have A Christmas-music Dance Party
Chances are you’re listening to it anyway, so you might as well get something out of it. Crank up your favorite seasonal jams and go crazy. At home with a few friends you don’t have to worry about dancing well—you can basically just throw your body around with abandon and, in the process, get a pretty solid cardio workout.
Go Ice Skating
Just make sure to find an indoor rink. Ice skating is a pretty tremendous workout. It takes a ton of core strength to stay balanced, it tones infrequently used muscles in your legs and butt, and it’s relatively low-impact (great if you have joint issues). To maximize its benefits, skate hard for 20 to 30 seconds before slowing down for 30 seconds (and repeating the pattern, of course).
Try Hot Yoga
When you’re cold, you want to be warm. (Groundbreaking idea, right?) And what better way to fight the cold than by contorting your body into a pretzel shape in a 100-degree room? Bikram, or hot yoga, is a killer workout in a studio with a rain-forest-like climate. Just be sure to bundle up afterward—the temperature change can be jarring.
Do Workouts In Your Living Room
Whether you stream videos via YouTube (we like Blogilates and Tone It Up) or pop in an old-school DVD, there are tons of options for little to no cost. Some require minimal equipment like dumbbells or a resistance band, but most consist of body-weight exercises you can do almostanywhere in your house.
Turn Chores Into A Game
Stay with us. If you’re cleaning your house anyway, you might as well make it remotely enjoyable. And weird as it seems, cleaning can totally be a workout if you do it right. Blast a fun playlist and focus on chores that make the most sense as calorie burners, like scrubbing the tub or vacuuming. Every time the song changes, throw in a few squats or pushups. Toning while tidying: That’s what’s up.
Just Keep Swimming
Like ice skating, you’ll have to find an indoor venue, but we’re huge proponents of getting a workout in the pool. It’s way easier on your body than exercises like running (the water provides both support and resistance), it tones pretty much every muscle and it’s a great option for people of all skill levels.