Category Archives: Yoga

Favorite Winter Workout

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It always seems like the holidays are a good distraction to the fact that winter has arrived. There is something wonderful about bundling up in your favorite winter scarf and hat and heading out for a holiday stroll. A white Christmas seems magical and no one seems to mind the snow. But then the holidays pass and we settle in for the long, cold winter.

Michael and I have talked a bit about our desire to get moving more this winter. When we first met we were incredibly active as a couple. Our date nights usually involved a run followed by dinner and we frequently found our way to the yoga studio on the weekends. Then we moved in together, got engaged and planned our wedding. We had much less time to work out and our priorities shifted a bit. But 2015 has arrived, we’re newlyweds and we have more time on our hands. We’ve both agreed that we need to get running more and back into the yoga studio. Lucky for me, these are two of my favorite winter workouts.

I love running in the winter. I feel like we spend so much time curled up inside with the heat on. The cold air, the crunch of the snow under my feet and the sweat under all my layers gets me excited. I love heading out and tackling 3 or 4 miles. I usually take it slow in the winter with my runs and pay extra attention to my footing and the pavement in front of me. I’m always on the lookout for ice! After my runs I head inside and keep the workout going. I try to mix up my post run routine as much as possible and pull exercises from the yoga and barre studios for inspiration. I’ll often mix in some legwork like squats or lunges, followed by arm work. These days I like to use 3lb. weights and do a few of my favorite barre sequences. I follow it up with a solid 5 minutes of abs to strengthen my core. I try to keep myself moving for another 15-20 minutes after my run and always try to keep my heart rate up! I conclude with lots of stretching, and some foam rolling if I need it.

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On days when the temperature barely breaks 10 degrees and it’s just too cold and too blustery to head out for a run I love to opt for the yoga studio (and barre too!). Yoga is also my go-to workout when I’m snowed in and need a good sweat. I crank the heat, light a candle, and turn on my playlist and flow. It’s amazing and one of my favorite things to do when I’m snowed in! I start with child’s pose, move through cat and cow, start moving with sun salutations, move through triangle, pyramid and revolved triangle (one of my all time favorite sequences), head into half-moon, standing splits, move through some balance poses, and then head down to the mat for pigeon, janushirasana, back bends and savasana. I always vary my practice to give my body what it needs. Sometimes that is more twisting, other times it is lots of movement and occasionally it is just a nice gentle flow.

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Michael and I will definitely be doing these and other variations throughout the winter to stay warm. We’re also looking forward to cross-country skiing together, which is one of my favorite all time activities!

A special thanks to Target® C9 for sponsoring this post through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. I was compensated for my time but all opinions are my own.

What is your favorite winter workout?

Tips for Staying Active as the Seasons Change

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Can you believe it’s December 1st already? Time has certainly flown by! But I guess that happens when you are busy preparing for your wedding, getting married and honeymooning on the beach. We said goodbye to the sunshine, the sand, the water, and paradise and are back to reality today. That reality is cold weather, shorter days and snow. Welcome winter.

When the seasons shift I usually find myself shifting my workouts. Personally, it’s one of my favorite things about the seasons. The shifts can be hard (hello darkness at 4:30pm) but I like that I’m forced to change my routine a bit, try new things, and mix it up. Here’s a few of my tips for staying active with the season change:

Adjust for daylight. I don’t love to run in the cold and the dark. I have asthma so it burns my lungs and I get easily spooked in the dark. Once winter is upon us I try to switch my schedule up so I run during my lunch break 1 or 2 days a week. This way I take advantage of the daylight and warmest temperatures of the day, decrease the number of opportunities to be scared in the dark and I don’t cut back on my running at all. Wins all around.

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Compromise. I’m not really a big fan of running during the workday. I hate messing up my hair, or having to shower in the office showers (just no). I’m also not a fan of packing up my running gear, shower stuff, and makeup and bringing it to the office. High maintenance? Maybe. Luckily I’ve found that a super cute gym bag, nice wipes (LOVE the Yes-To brand) and fun headbands makes this more fun. I usually skip the post run shower, use wipes to clean myself up, touch-up my makeup and throw on a fun headband to spruce up my boring ponytail. It’s a compromise but it gets the job down and helps me stay active all winter.

Hibernate. I LOVE hibernating the yoga or barre studio all winter. The studio is warm and cozy. And the workouts usually do a good job of opening and strengthening your shoulders and chest, which we typically close and weaken over the winter thanks to our efforts to stay warm.

 

Try something new. In addition to hibernating, I love trying new things. I’m much more likely to try the new spin studio or strength class in the winter. It’s fun and can brighten any cold, dark evening!

Embrace the season. It’s easy to want to hole up indoors, skip your workouts and re-emerge in the spring. But if you did that you’d miss out on all that winter has to offer. It’s honestly one of my favorite seasons. I always look forward to downhill skiing and even more so cross-country skiing. It’s a fun way to spend an afternoon and gives you an incredible workout! Snowshoeing and ice skating are also fun winter activities that will give you a great workout too. A few hours in the cold air, sweating and moving will reinvigorate you. When spring rolls around, you’ll be happy you enjoyed the snow and you’ll have some good memories too!

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The overall theme is to be flexible, and have fun! It’s the best way to stay motivated and stay moving! How do you stay active with the season change?

Just in case you need something to warm you up, I’ll be back soon to share scenes from our honeymoon in paradise! I’m also looking forward to giving you a look into our wedding day! Check back soon!

A special thanks to Target® C9 for sponsoring this post through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. I was compensated for my time but all opinions are my own.