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Saturday, January 14, 2012

Walking in Winter---How to Beat Cabin Fever

I am so grateful for a recent reminder from a friend of the magical qualities exercise brings into our lives. Especially during these long dark months, exercise wakes up our body and mind by bringing invigoration and enthusiasm. Lately I've been getting up early and rather than moving slowly through my morning routine, I decided I would fight the couch potato approach to winter existence and get outside for a brisk walk. Just 20 minutes.

The first day, I had to bundle up since the temp was a chilly +8 degrees F. At least it had warmed up from the -14 from when I went to bed last night. I put on long-johns, jeans, two pairs of thick socks, turtle neck, sweat shirt, jacket, hat with ear muffs, and mittens, as well as hiking boots. Out into the dark morning I went. It’s so pretty on a cold winter morning when not much is stirring, “not even a” moose; couldn’t resist that play on words.

The only noise was when someone startled me by starting their car with a remote from the warmth inside their home. I only walked for about a mile and just about 20 minutes. Cheeks were starting to burn from the cold…since then I have used a scarf. But the magic worked. I walked into our warm home with a sparkle in my step. I could feel the enthusiasm that comes from a good start to the day as I contemplated my list of activities ahead.

So I have settled into a routine of walking early and then later in the afternoon for 30 more minutes. And thus I get my 10,000 steps per day. Besides my reduced calories 6 glycemic-balanced meals per day, the weight keeps coming off. Slowly and surely I am moving toward my 80 pound weight loss goal.

I remembered the question my doctor always asks me during the winter visits to his office; “Are you exercising at least 5 days a week”? The best solutions for winter-blues have to be exercise and eating right. I am convinced!

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