Health

12 Ways to Get Fit and Beat the Winter Blues in Vancouver

Posted on December 27, 2016

CityMash.com - Winter blues got you down? Holiday calories made your jeans too snug? Too much crunching and munching and not enough crunches?

Fear not. There are plenty of ways to be active in the harsh Vancouver winter when the weather turns cold and uninviting. It is essential to make a point of getting out of the warm cozy bed when it is raining or snowing and get that workout in.

You can see the wide array of activities available here that will help you to stay in shape and have fun doing it! If you don’t consider yourself a rugged outdoorsman (or outdoorswoman) who has no problem braving the intense cold, there are still plenty of unique options that will keep you fit, energized and unfrostbitten:

1. Parkour

Parkour “freerunning” art is the sport of jumping, swinging, vaulting and rolling from building to building over obstacles while using them to leverage and propel your body efficiently. It originated from a non-combative form of martial arts in Africa. If this sounds appealing or curious to you, you can visit Origins Parkour gym on Main Street and check it out. Vancouver’s Origins is a great option for kids as well as the young at heart to get some unique physical activity in and learn a new activity! 

2. Hit the local ski hills or head up to Whistler

Of course we all know about the famous Whistler/Blackcomb slopes that offer plenty of skiing options for all levels and skillsets. It is no wonder that there are such a wide range of activities from snowboarding to sledding, to snowshoeing to name just a few. Mother Nature has certainly given us a thrilling powdery playground! 

3. Bouldering

Bouldering, or the technical form of rock climbing, is basically climbing short distances or routes without using a rope or harness. It is fun, it is challenging and it is an excellent core workout! If the thought of trying this activity outdoors in the cold is daunting, worry not. The Hive bouldering gym in Vancouver boasts two locations in where you can try your hand at this versatile indoor and outdoor sport.  

4. 3D Dodgeball

The fun and quirky activity of 3-D Dodgeball is actually played on trampolines. This is both insanely fun, playful as well as a cardio healthy activity for the whole family to enjoy! Extreme Air Park in Richmond contains the largest trampoline park in Canada, in which you can try a multitude of activities. It’s a great stress-reliever and you can even socialize by joining a Dodgeball group. 

5. Salsa Dancing

The romantic and seductive dance form of Salsa can be a thoroughly rewarding activity that allows for self-expression and helps with coordination and flexibility too. Learning this classic latin dance provides a good cardio workout while listening to the beautiful traditional music in the background. How inspiring! So don’t just sit inside on a cold Friday night, get caliente (hot) with some Spanish music and Dancing. SalsaVancouver.net was launched to inform newcomers and experienced dancers alike about classes and events going on around the city and link up like-minded individuals, experts and novices to the Salsa world. So polish your dancing shoes and get those hips shaking!

6. Hit the gym

It is such a cliche that everyone’s New Year’s resolution is to workout more and hit the gym. We know, we have heard it a thousand times. Studies find that after the first week of January, statistically most of those numbers plummet with no actual follow through. A good tip is to get a workout buddy who will encourage you and force you to get off your freezing cold buns and stick to your resolutions!

7. Go for a run

Vancouver has a dedicated community of runners who can be seen even on the most blistery of days, running the seawall. Get inspired to join them and shed some of that holiday weight! It is helpful to check out local Meetup runners groups or inquire about the free classes hosted at Vancouver’s Lululemon stores. It’s very inspiring to be connected and encouraged by your community. 

8. Play some indoor badminton

Badminton Vancouver is a unique workout facility that boasts a whopping twelve badminton courts featuring Olympic style equipment and hours of fun to increase your agility, focus and reflex reaction skills. You can easily find several facilities that would suite your athletic needs.

9. Take a dip at the annual Polar Bear Swim

Every year, thousands of Vancouverites can be found taking the freezing cold New Year’s Day dip in English Bay at the annual Polar Bear Swim. While this may not be your cup of tea, it most certainly would be an invigorating start to 2017! 

10. Go for a Bike Ride

It is very important to take advantage of the occasional sunny warm winter days and take a bike ride. Aside from the obvious cardio and fitness benefits, being outside on your bike allows you to soak in the essential Vitamin D from the sun. Vitamin D helps prevent seasonal depression, increases endorphins and serotonin and boosts your mental, physical and immune health. This is key for surviving challenging winter season.

11. Go ice skating for free at Robson Square

Another outdoor Vancouver activity available at Robson Square is Ice skating in the heart of downtown! It won’t cost you anything and it is fun for the whole family and accessible to all skill levels. So you don’t need to be a professional Hockey player or Olympic figure skater to get out onto the ice and get moving.

12. Take a Hike

Just a short drive to the North Shore mountains offers you a breathtaking option to get fit, enjoy fresh crisp air and commune with nature’s wonders. It’s an ideal hiker’s dream. Make sure to bundle up with layers, wool socks, mittens and waterproof footwear if you’re planning a lengthy hike. 

 

Now get up off of the sofa and make a plan for how you will choose to partake in all of the diverse winter activities Vancouver has to offer! 
Have any more suggestions? Feel free to leave them in the comments area below…
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Written by Alena Rebmann
More articles by Alena Rebmann
  • Nawab Singh

    Wonderful ! I am thrilled.
    Thanks 🙂 Alena !

  • Riana Ang-Canning

    Love some of these creative ideas! 3D Dodgeball – how cool is that?

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