Eat, Sleep, Move: Death to the Treadmill

Posted on 12 November 2014 by admin

Writer Sabree offers tips for how to keep off the winter weight

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Midwest winters give us days that are mild and sunny, wet with bone-chilling cold, and everything in between.

It is no wonder why even the most active of people often venture indoors to get their daily dose of movement. There are many fun and high bang for your buck-forms of exercise that, to me, sound whole lot better than waiting in line for a treadmill or elliptical at one’s local gym.

By now, yoga is a well-known form of exercise that can also serve as a form of meditation and stress management. Some styles of yoga can be very physically challenging and can increase one’s strength and flexibility.

Others focus on relaxation and mental centering. Given the dozens of styles of yoga in the St. Louis area, you can find a form of yoga and an instructor that matches up nearly perfectly with your goals. Because instructors teach yoga in groups, there is often a very welcoming community in which one can participate.

Just like the very passionate yoga community, the CrossFit community is full of energetic and supportive people. The St. Louis area has gone from a handful of CrossFit gyms, or boxes, to over a dozen in just a few years. There is a reason for this — CrossFit is fast-paced, competitive in nature and result-driven. Given some of the conflicting love-it or hate-it publicity of late, it is best to take advantage of the first free “drop-in” class that all CrossFit gyms offer.

You can experience the environment and the coaches for yourself. Many CrossFit gyms have sizable student discounts, so be sure to shop around for the best rates.

For those wanting a bit more mental solitude, this area has a number of nationally ranked indoor climbing gyms.

The sport of climbing develops not only serious physical capacity, but it can hone your mental focus

You can climb alone, using the gym’s auto-belay system, or you can climb with a belay partner.

You can also climb one of the many bouldering walls that require minimal equipment.

You will also find a serious community of climbers that are also eager to assist and teach beginners. The local gyms offer comprehensive classes from beginner to advanced and often organize trips outdoors.

Students who are not afraid of venturing outside this time of year may find that colder months are some of the best times to hit the otherwise busy local trails.

Fall and winter trail running, biking and hiking not only offer great sights, but the experience of an empty trail can bring a serious intimate closeness with nature.

Winter trail sports can come with an initial investment in windproof and cold weather gear.

However, you can often wear these things well into the Spring, and they may double as everyday wear on those particularly nasty days.

From martial arts, gymnastics and swimming; there is a large number of activities that will not only keep you active during the colder months, but can keep you mentally sharp as well.

Droning in front of a television while jogging will always be a winter pastime, the St. Louis area offers the student a myriad of engaging choices that you can continue year round.

Who knows — you may even pick up a new hobby and a new community to be a part of.


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