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I’m sure many of you made some vows/resolutions to get in shape during 2017. But with the cold temps and the short amount of daylight, it might be difficult to get/stay motivated. Here are four fat burning activities to do in winter, that will raise your heart rate and burn off those calories you accumulated over the holidays.

Shovel Snow

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Depending on where you live, this is probably an activity that you can’t avoid doing during the winter months.  The American Heart Association says that for most people, shoveling snow may not lead to any health problems.

However, the association warns that the risk of a heart attack during snow shoveling may increase for some, stating that the combination of colder temperatures and physical exertion increases the workload on the heart. People who are outdoors in cold weather should avoid sudden exertion, like lifting a heavy shovel full of snow. Even walking through deep, wet snow will get the old ticker racing.

According to FITDAY.com, 288 calories are burned an hour while shoveling.

X-Country Skiing

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Cross-country skiing is travel on skis over snow-covered terrain, whereby skiers rely on their own locomotion rather than on ski lifts or other forms of assistance. Modern cross-country skiing shares self-locomotion as a core attribute with the original form of skiing from which all skiing disciplines evolved, including alpine skiing, ski jumping, and Telemark skiing.

The word ski comes from the Old Norse word “skíð” which means stick of wood.Skiing started as a technique for traveling cross-country over snow on skis, starting almost five millennia ago with beginnings in Scandinavia. It may have been practiced as early as 600 BC in Daxing’anling, in what is now China.

  • The average person burns about 400-500 calories per hour while cross country skiing at a slow pace.
  • Moderate-speed cross country skiing (think 5-7 m.p.h.) burns closer to 500-550 calories per hour.
  • Cross country skiing at a brisk, vigorous pace burns closer to 600 calories per hour.
  • Cross country ski racing can burn as much as 900 calories per hour.
  • Continuous uphill cross country skiing, like mountaineering and skiing uphill, can burn over 1,000 calories per hour.

Ice Climbing

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Ice climbing is the activity of ascending inclined ice formations. Usually, ice climbing refers to roped and protected climbing of features such as icefalls, frozen waterfalls, and cliffs and rock slabs covered with ice refrozen from flows of water. For the purposes of climbing, ice can be broadly divided into two spheres, alpine ice and water ice.

A climber chooses equipment according to the slope and texture of the ice. For example, on flat ice, almost any good hiking or mountaineering boot will usually suffice, but for serious ice climbing double plastic mountaineering boots or their stiff leather equivalent are usually used, which must be crampon compatible and stiff enough to support the climber and maintain ankle support.

If you’re more into extreme sports, ice climbing is probably your Winter sport of choice. Although there aren’t any stats that say how many calories you burn scaling up ice, you burn 307 calories after 39 minutes of traditional rock climbing. Ice climbing may take more strength, but you may not be able to move as fast as you would on rocks, so it is probably a pretty close number.

Ice Skating

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Ok, I know this is a little more extreme than most of us can do.

fat burning activities to do in winter
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This is probably the image that most of us can relate to when we picture ice skating. A study by Federico Formenti of the University of Oxford suggests that the earliest ice skating happened in southern Finland more than 3,000 years ago.

A skate can slide over ice because the ice molecules at the surface cannot properly bond with the molecules of the mass of ice beneath and thus are free to move like molecules of liquid water. These molecules remain in a semi-liquid state, providing lubrication.

Once again, according to Fitday, you will burn about 346 calories an hour while doing this activity.

Excuses are easy, dedication, however, is a completely different beast. I know that some of these previously mentioned activities might not be entirely feasible for you, but my point is this…If you want to make a change in your life, the only one that can make that happen is you. Get off your ass and do something! lol. Be safe, be happy and be healthy.