Looking for the ultimate cardio exercise while vacationing in the winter that keeps you outdoors rather than in a gym? Cross country skiing offers a terrific low-impact, total body workout sure to get you in top shape.
In cross country skiing, you traverse a flat terrain using your own strength and power to propel you across the snow. Your skills of skiing, hiking, and skating all converge to produce a variety of health benefits. All of your major muscle groups are utilized, which creates a total body workout that targets the upper and lower body simultaneously. Working in unison, your muscles propel you forward and help you to burn more calories—up to 1,100 per hour—than in any other exercise or sport! And plenty of resorts offer grounds to try your skills and strength!
For the best results, be sure to glide across the snow and keep your body at a 45- to 60-degree angle to the ground, thus creating the kick/long glide/propel motions. Dressing in layers will be key, as the aerobic exercise will cause you to go from cold to hot quickly. Your skiing boots should be very flexible and should be worn with thick socks. Don’t forget to wear skiing hats and mittens to keep your head and hands warm.
While you are expending a great deal of energy, the aerobic exercise has a very low impact on your body. This puts less stress on your muscles and joints, allowing you to spend more time out on the skiing slopes at your resort. By sustaining an increased heart rate over a long period of time, you’re not only strengthening your heart, but you’re also building stronger stamina and endurance.
So get out there and enjoy some time on the slopes! Remember, any day in the snow beat an afternoon in the gym. We wish you a great time!