How To Get Fit (and Stay Warm) This Winter

So, you’ve decided that now is the time to get off the couch and get fit. One problem. It’s freezing outside! What to do, what to do? You could hit up the gym, but that can be expensive. Let’s say you want to get fit while enjoying all that our great nation has to offer. Here are a few tips for exercising safely and enjoyably outdoors in the winter months.

Don’t be a hero!

Perhaps that should read a different way—don’t be an idiot! If it’s a bazillion degrees below zero, there is snow/rain/fog everywhere, or the sidewalks are icier than your local skating rink, stay indoors. There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking an unscheduled rest day in the name of safety. Heading out in treacherous weather could lead to you putting yourself or those around you at risk. Besides, you don’t want to set back your training schedule with an injury.

Dress to impress

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This may be overkill, but it’s always good to dress warmly!

Dressing for the weather is crucial all year long. I’ve been told that when running, the key is to dress for a temperature ten degrees warmer than the thermometer, because your body heats up as you exercise. If you’re doing something more low-impact, such as a walk or a hike, add on a few extra layers. It’s always better to air on the side of caution, so if you’re not sure, add another layer! And don’t forget to be seen. It gets dark early in the winter, so spending a few bucks on some reflective gear (as fancy as a jacket or as cheap and cheerful as a reflective snap band) is a very good idea.

 Bring a buddy

Working out with a friend can be a great way to motivate yourself. You’re way less likely to skip your workout if you’ve got a bud bundled up and waiting at the door! Plus, exercising with a friend makes the time go by faster – the hill doesn’t seem quite so bug when you’re laughing all the way up. And of course, a post-workout stretch sesh adds on even more time for catching up.

 Know your limits

Your stamina when exercising outdoors can be seriously affected by the weather. Something that is easy for you to do during the balmy days of spring, may feel a little harder in the dead of winter. Pushing yourself is necessary when exercising, but don’t overdo it. Accept the fact that running the same distance will feel harder in the winter than it will in the spring. Account for the weather when you’re training. If you keep an exercise diary, note the weather you worked out in, along with everything else. You might be surprised to see what kind of trends emerge.

Have fun!

Last but not least, enjoy yourself! You’ve made an awesome choice to commit to fitness, even when it means heading outside while everyone else stays cozy under the covers (wimps). Take in the environment around you, and watch the seasons change as you run your way to spring!

No way, José!

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A silly grin from a happier season.

It’s the end of a bat-flipping era. According to Jays GM Ross Atkins, it is “unlikely” that José Bautista will be returning to the Blue Jays for the 2018-19 season. Not a surprise, perhaps, but it’s sure to be a seismic shift in how the Jays play going forward. The Jays are currently one of the oldest team in the MLB, and the baseball season is gruelling. The team suffered from a host of injuries this season, many likely due to cumulative wear and tear (see Russell Martin’s oblique injury).

In no way am I trying to sound ageist (which would make me my own worst enemy), but it appears to be about time the Jays diversify their players a bit. Bautista is a solid hitter, and seemingly a great leader in the room, but his rotator cuff isn’t going to hold out forever, and the addition of Kendrys Morales means that the DH job is no longer available.

The big bat will certainly be missed, especially if the rumours are true and St. Louis is gunning for Josh Donaldson (another victim of an injury-plagued season). It’s time for a change, and I’m ready to see what the rookies can offer, but it’ll be sad to see the back of #19.

Thanks, Joey Bats.