How to stay active over the upcoming winter months

Layering up too much can cause overheating and result in a shorter workout

Finding motivation to stay active and healthy can be exceptionally hard with current pandemic conditions and cold winter months right around the corner.

Exercise benefits not only physical well-being but also helps mental health.

“I feel like it’s important to stay active right now to avoid the seasonal depression,” Darcey Emmanuel, owner of Kingdom Fit, said. “Pay attention to how you feel and take time to

work on yourself.”

The Centers for Disease Control recommends performing some sort of activity for at least 150 minutes a week, which may sound like a lot. This can be spread out to 30 minutes over five days to break that number up over the week.

“Many times I’ve dealt with clients who get too comfortable in the winter months and they feel like it’s OK to gain weight because they can cover it up with winter clothes,” Emmanuel said. “But really, it’s hard on your joints to gain weight excessively over those holidays and then try to drop it all as the summer comes.”

Caffeine intake usually increases over the winter months because more people are trying to stay warm by drinking hot beverages. This increases chances of becoming dehydrated.

“It’s absolutely vital to make sure you’re getting at least half your body weight in (ounces of) water,” Emmanuel said. “I tell people to get at least five or six water bottles a day.”

Water and stretching go hand in hand in order to keep joints healthy.

“When your joints or when your muscles get tight, your ligaments get tight, so it’s easier to hurt something or strain something,” Emmanuel said. “You’ll want to stretch them to kind of get them

relaxed. The cool down is just as vital as the warm up.”

Before lacing up the shoes, make sure you’re wearing the proper attire to stay warm enough.

“It’s important to layer up to a certain extent,” Emmanuel said. “I know a lot of people end up flaring up too much and end their workout early because they’re just so hot.”

Items such as dry-fit shirts, all-weather jackets and gloves can help you keep comfortable from start to finish.

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