How to Stay Active During the Winter

Family spending time together doing winter activities

If you’re anything like me, you understand the importance of staying active during the winter months. Whether it’s playing sports, going to the gym, or simply heading out for a walk, it’s important to include regular physical activity. Heart and Stroke recommends adults should accumulate at least 150 minutes of moderate–to-vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.

But there’s just something about the winter that has a way of demotivating us to not want to be active. However, as we start the year off, here are some of our tips on how you can stay active as the temperature drops.

What are some of the ways I can be active this winter?

Create your own home gym

Woman exercising at home

Creating a home gym does not have to be overwhelming. Start by choosing a space in your home, such as a spare room, basement, garage or living room. Start small with a few pieces of equipment, such as weights, a yoga mat and resistance bands. This will help you develop a habit for working out. Once you have done this and if you have the space, you can buy bigger equipment.

Take a hike

Family taking a winter hike

Literally, take a hike. A lot of people assume that hiking is an exclusive summer/fall activity, but you would be surprised to know that many hiking trails are open all year long and you’ll discover a whole other world that you wouldn’t normally find in the summer or fall. And while you might be discouraged to take a hike in the winter because of the cold, on mild days you may find yourself breaking a sweat out on the trails. Believe me, a winter hike is a good way to not only stay active but (if you dress yourself accordingly) keep warm.

Mall walking

A woman carrying shopping bags and hand weights

If you’re still not convinced that an outdoor hike is right for you, consider mall walking. At first glance it may not seem like a workout, but anything that can keep you active and moving can be considered a workout. Mall walking is great, because not only can you keep yourself warm through this fun “workout” you never know what great deals you may come across (which is always a welcomed bonus). To add to your mall walk, consider bringing your hand weights with you.

Participate in winter activities

Family preparing to go skiing

Skiing, snowboarding, skating or tobogganing are all great outdoor activities that can help you stay active and burn calories.  Your local municipalities may have public skating rinks set up across the city (and if not, consider visiting your local recreational centre). And if you think you’re too grown up to go sledding, consider taking your small children (or nieces, nephews, and the children of close friends’) to a hill. Even if you don’t participate in the actual activity, you’ll get an active outdoor workout climbing up and down the hill.

Visit a rec room

Group of friends playing laser tag

There are many different types out there that are suitable for people of all ages. My personal favourites include: going trampolining, rock climbing and playing laser tag. These are great ways to not only unleash your inner child, but also get a good workout in. However, be warned, as fun as these activities can be, if you haven’t worked out in a long time (or even stretched) your muscles may be aching the next day.

Go for a swim

Group of children in the pool

Many recreational centres are open all year-long and traditional summer activities – like swimming – would still be available to do. Your local rec centre may also offer workout classes, squash, yoga classes, drop-in basketball, dance classes and more!


While this may not be an extensive list, it is a good start if you’re looking for ways to stay active this winter. Many of these activities are also suitable for kids, and it would be a great way to form everlasting memories and fun with them. So don’t let the old-man winter stop you from going out and being active — let your creativity fly this winter.

Do you have any more suggestions? Let us know in the comments down below.

Disclaimer: This information is provided solely for informational purposes. Use of the information contained herein is at the sole choice and risk of the reader. Always consult your physician or health care provider before starting any exercise program or physical activity.