4 reasons why you don’t need a gym membership in Chicago

Every year thousands resolve to start exercising. So, they spend of ton of cash, join a gym, buy new coat racks exercise equipment, and then curse the mornings trying to hit the 5am class. Why go through the hassle of driving to the gym in treacherous weather, this polar vortex has given us plenty of workouts in our own front yards. Hit the snooze button on that early morning class, these 4 winter activities are workout enough!


1. Go old school. Skip the snowblower and grab the shovel instead! Not only will your arms get a killer workout, legs and obliques will feel it too! (calories burned? appox. 380/hour)

2. Go for a walk. Don’t get irritated that the majority of people near you didn’t shovel, your body gets a better workout walking in snow than on dry pavement. According to exercise physiologist Bill McArdle:

“Walking in packed snow increases by 60 percent the calories burned compared to walking on a paved road, while walking in soft snow triples the calories burned compared to walking at the same speed on a treadmill. In addition, the added resistance of the snow can firm and tone the muscles.”

3. Sledding isn’t just for the kids. Sure, flying down the hill is a blast, but walking back up the hill is an incredible leg and glutes workout. Want to add resistance & intensity? Tow a young one back up the hill! (calories burned? appox. 428/hour)

4. Granted there’s a greater fear of falling as we get older, but joining the kids on the ice for a leisure skate is great for the legs and heart. Since it’s a low impact activity (assuming no impact from falls!) skating is easier on joints and beneficial for balance and core strength.

While the kids enjoy their “in from the cold” warm up with a hot chocolate- reward yourself with Design the Life You Want to Live’s Homemade Baileys spiked in yours!

Though we’re in a bit of a 30° heat wave, make sure you protect yourself against frigid temperatures.

Winter photo credit.


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