Making Good Health Simple: Keep your body and brain active on break

Ronnie Palmer plays with his son, Ronnie, in a foam pit at Altitude Trampoline Park in Concord's Steeplegate Mall on November 21, 2018.
Ronnie Palmer plays with his son, Ronnie, in a foam pit at Altitude Trampoline Park in Concord's Steeplegate Mall on November 21, 2018.

Mother nature has been so unpredictable, it is almost impossible to be able to clear the clutter from the doorway. My entryway is overflowing with winter boots, rain boots, sneakers, turf shoes, cheer shoes and slippers. The coat hooks are jam-packed with snowboarding jackets, fleece pullovers, Sherpa zip-ups and windbreakers and a few umbrellas. My plans have been changed due to weather so many times this past month I can’t remember what season it is.

My typical snowboarding, sledding, snowshoeing, winter hiking, and ice skating have been replaced with soggy walks, hiking without microspikes and sadly my snowshoes have only been used once. Side note: my dog loves frolicking in the mud as much as the snow. Lack of snow does not mean we give up on our physical and mental health. There are plenty of fun things to do – you just have to think outside of the traditional winter box.

February vacation is just around the corner and you may be planning a magnificent staycation. If you’re New Hampshire bound, there are plenty of things to do to keep your brain and body active while winter figures out if she is going to reappear again.

Beating the winter blues can be tricky. Make sure you set a realistic goal of moving your body. It can be as simple as a walk outside or as intense as ice climbing. No matter what you decide to do, make sure you dress in layers. Just be prepared for anything as these temperatures fluctuate more than 20 degrees in one day.

On-demand exercises: YouTube has lots of free workouts on their app or website. You can narrow down the search by type of activity and length. One is a five minute no equipment required video is “5 Min Fix: Cardio Blast Fat Burning Workout All Levels No Equipment Home Routine” posted by jessicasmithtv. Also most cable providers offer some type of on demand exercises.

Trampoline park: This is not just limited to children. Adults can participate too. Concord has one at the Steeplegate Mall called Altitude Trampoline Park that is super fun. Look around for coupons for buyone hour, get one hour free – I had some from the CHS football card – and make this more affordable.

Go tubing or sledding: Go old school at White Park and get some extra exercise by walking up an incline. Take a more modern approach at Pats Peak with inflatable inner tubes. I found coupons in the Spectrum monthly.

Indoor swimming: Grab your towel and flip flops and find a local pool to swim at. Comfort Inn has day passes available, as do other locations.

Shake up your fitness: Lots of local opportunities in Concord. Try a complimentary three day trial at 43 Degrees North Athletic Club and experience one of their four studios for free.

Are you more of a Netflix binger, theater goer or a homebody? Here are some opportunities that don’t involve getting your heartrate up, but are important to brain health.

See a live performance: Try the Bank of New Hampshire Stage, Hatbox Theatre, Capitol Center for the Arts or some other local venue.

Have a camp-out inside: Have an evening camping in the living room? Move the furniture out of the way and set up a pop-up in the middle of the room. Gather up you pillows, blankets, and healthy snacks.

Take out a jigsaw puzzle: It may have been a decade (or longer) since you’ve worked on a puzzle be present and let everything else go. Find one of a snowy scene, a tropical location or my personal favorite puzzle – runts candy!

Whatever your plan is, make sure you sneak in some exposure to the sun! Since there are a not many foods that provide your body with vitamin D, the easiest source is from exposure of skin to sunlight. During summer a short exposure of 10 to 5 minutes is plenty, but in winter, sunshine can be harder to come by, especially if you are snuggled up indoors. So get outside, get moving and smile at the sun!

 

(Crystal Reynolds is an owner of 43 Degrees North Athletic Club.)

 

Author: Crystal Reynolds

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