Training tips for the entire family: activities you can do indoors and outdoors
Let’s face it, getting motivated to do exercise in the cooler months can be a grind. The temptation to hibernate is difficult to shake - and the very thought of peeling off cosy layers and put on fitness clothes gives us the goosebump jitters.
We don’t need to tell you that it’s all worth the effort - although we’ll tell you why. If you’re training outdoors, you’ll reap the rewards of a faster calorie burn rate, a boost of endorphins and a dose of D vitamin, too.
If you’re plumping for some indoor fitness, take comfort from the fact that it’ll be a great distraction from winter comfort food - and it can actually counteract any hankering for a midday sleep.
Whether you choose inside or out, why not get the whole family involved?
Today’s predisposition to an increasingly sedate lifestyle - think surfing time, car travel, TV - is taking its toll on our future generations. Reports of childhood obesity are never far from the news agenda, with experts pinpointing lack of exercise as a trigger.
Fostering a long-term exercise habit is all well and good - but remember all the bonding and fun you’ll have in the process. Here are some great ideas for whole-family fitness - inside and out - which will keep boredom at bay and entertain all ages.
Yes, there’s a time and a place for surfing the web and watching TV, but don’t neglect the garden. Now’s a great time to give it some TLC - and get the family exercising all at the same time. Dig out your garden tools, share them out and allocate an area to tackle each. It’s incentive enough that you’ll have a tidy new space all ready for the warmer weather.
Could there be a more perfect activity for the cooler months than swimming? Suitable for everyone, it’s a great all-rounder with no weather restrictions. Maybe you could even introduce a combined family goal. Fifty lengths too many? Whether you’re still in water wings or fully aqua-confident, swimming is a life skill you’ll never regret sharing with your family.
On your bikes
One way to blow off the winter cobwebs is some team cycling. Avoiding traffic is best for a family affair, but there’s no limit to where you can go. Forests, beaches or cycle paths, the world is at your wheels.
Yoga is for everyone - there are plenty of sequences suitable for all ages and abilities. Whether you practice at home or in a class, it’s a fantastic way to improve flexibility, muscle tone and core strength - not to mention bring about a sense of well-being and connectivity. Plus, one you get into a rhythm, it’ll become a skill you all learn together.
The great thing about winter walks is that they encourage bonding. Talking, holding hands, stopping for a family hot chocolate, there’s really no better way to spend an afternoon than with your nearest and dearest. As to where you can go - off the beaten track is a given. Why not take it in turns to pick a walk?
...and dance off
They say that ‘dancing is the hidden language of the soul’, so what better way to celebrate your own family quirks (and squeeze in some fitness time) than with a team dance off. We find the kitchen works best and points should be awarded for particularly energetic or flamboyant moves. Ready? Dance!