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How to Steer Clear of the Cold-Weather Pudge

November 16, 2010

The summer has officially left  depending on where you go to school, as the days are getting shorter and the temperature seems to be consistently dropping, but that doesn’t mean your waistline has to suffer. By following some of these simple rules during the cold-weather months, you can avoid gaining the winter bulge and come out looking and feeling good once the sun decides to share its warmth again.

Hot Beverages

Sometimes the days are so cold that your bones ache, making you crave something that can warm your entire body. You may be tempted to grab something rich and comforting, but by sticking to a simple hot tea you can reap health benefits, such as getting water, and get warm. Need caffeine? Skip the calorie-packed blended seasonal coffee beverages (like Starbuck’s White Chocolate Mocha which can come in at 420 calories for a tall) and stick to black and green teas, which have virtually no calories.

Walk to Class

Although it seems like the last thing you would like to do is walk to class in the chilly, dark morning, your body will thank you later. For many students, this may be a mile walk that they enjoy during the warm seasons, but they despise in the cold. But, if you layer up and walk briskly, a morning walk in the cold can be surprisingly refreshing and will cause your body and mind to wake up.

Don’t Go Carb Crazy

It seems the body craves carbs as much as it craves warmth in the cold weather months. There is nothing wrong with carbs in moderation, but remember your eating patterns in the summer months when dining during the winter months. Summer is full of salads and grilled meats and veggies, while winter meals tend to be made of pastas, pot-pies and warm bread. Be mindful, and your body will be happy come spring break!

Don’t Forget About The Gym

It is difficult to motivate to work out in the winter months when the short days and long nights cause you to just want to hibernate. However, if you stop exercising for a time being, your body will reflect it post-groundhog day. Exercising will also keep the winter “blahs” away, and cause you to be more focused and happy. Need more motivation? Plan your gym visit around a T.V. program that you want to watch. Have a hockey or basketball game you can’t wait to catch? Plan to run on the treadmill during the game instead of watching it from the couch and you will get the best of both worlds.

Do At Home Exercises

For many students, the cold can be simply unbearable. If this is the case, it is easy to find exercises online that you can do at home. Even doing twenty push ups and fifty sit ups can help you stay in shape and battle the bulge. It can be as easy as doing a plank while watching The Simpsons, or doing a wall sit when watching the Lakers. A little bit goes a long way.

Play an Intramural Sport

Most Universities offer intramural sports to all students. They can be fun, non competitive, but still a good work out. By joining a sport, you not only get to socialize with other students, but you also make a commitment that you have to fulfill. It is hard to skip out of a game when a team is depending on you, and that way you will be forced to get in a work out that day.

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