5 great winter workouts

One of the biggest obstacles to a winter workout can simply be mustering the courage to step out of your slippers and back away from the heater. But there are plenty of great ways to stay in shape no matter what the weather is doing.

The Blue Room’s resident fitness guru Natasha Dinneen shares five of her favourite ways to keep fit in the cooler months.

1.  Indoor session

If the wind is howling or it’s raining outside, why not turn your lounge room into a workout zone?

Why not try an indoor circuit training session like this one which requires little equipment (a skipping rope and a chair) but will certainly help get the blood pumping. Aim to repeat the circuit at 2 – 3 times. Go from one exercise to the other with minimal rest in between to ensure your heart rate stays elevated.

Try mixing it up by downloading a fitness app to do a session of anything from yoga to a more intense cardio workout at the swipe of a finger.

2.  Stair climbs

If your workplace, home or nearby park has a stair-well then USE THEM! A stairs workout doesn’t cost a thing and can be done at any time and on any set of stairs. It’s also an effective way to improve fitness and overall health. Running (instead of walking) the stairs can bring even more benefits, however if you aren’t up to that yet then don’t worry – walking up stairs will still get the blood pumping! 

You may like to set yourself a goal of walking up 200 steps a day most days of the week and then gradually increasing this to 200 steps twice a day. Or, it might be more realistic to just commit to using the stairs instead of the elevator 90% of the time when going to meetings or moving between different floors at work. 

If you also want to add a tougher workout, try committing to a solid 15 minute workout three times a week. Combine short running/walking efforts of 15-30 seconds sprint/fast paced walk and try to get up as many stairs as possible in this time. You could even try bouts of 15-30 seconds walking or running two steps at a time. 

3.  Try a multi visit group exercise pass

Variety is the spice of life so why not mix it up and try something new? Multi-visit passes at fitness glasses can be a great way to try a new workout without having to commit to a membership. A group atmosphere can make training a lot more enjoyable and motivating. A lot of leisure centres and gym facilities have a wide variety of classes to suit a range of interests and fitness levels. 
man exercising in exercise class

4.  Join a running or fitness group

There is no denying outdoor group sessions or fitness groups have become hugely popular in Australia. Whether it’s the 6am session at the oval down the road or a lunch session near your workplace, it can be hard to escape them! Consider joining a group (often these are a lot cheaper than a gym membership) to help keep you motivated during winter. Or how about starting up your own group with work colleagues, neighbours or friends? It might be brisk walking, running, cycling or your own park-based boot camp or exercise session. You could mix it up by rotating who chooses and runs the workout session each time. There are heaps of great apps if you get stuck for ideas. 

5.  Think fun

When you’re having fun you may forget that you’re exercising and burning energy. Think outside the square and channel your inner child by trying activities like; roller-skating, ice-skating or tenpin bowling with friends. Social netball, indoor beach volleyball, indoor cricket, indoor soccer are also a lot of fun and you can often play year-round at indoor sports centres. Why not start your own team with friends or work colleagues? Joining a team is a great way to help you get motivated plus you’re catching up with friends at the same time – win-win!
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