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4 Winter Chores That Double As Exercise

Sometimes you can't make it to the gym because the roads are too icy or your car is buried under several feet of snow. In times like those, it might not really matter if your gym is impossibly far away, because there are plenty of chores you can do around the house that are just as good of a workout as hitting the weights.

1. Stretching
Even though you're not in your yoga clothes, it's still a good idea to stretch and warm up before heading outside to shovel the snow or scrape the ice off your vehicle. Start by slowly bending toward your toes to stretch your back and legs. Then, circle your arms for a minute or two to warm the muscles. A few lunges will further prepare your legs. After that, bundle up, strap on your nuyu™ Activity Tracker and head outside. And always remember, if you feel yourself getting overtired or overheating, head inside, take a break and cool off.

2. Shoveling
Depending on how wet the snow is, it can either be light and fluffy or very thick and heavy. The first kind isn't much of a problem to deal with, but the second can cause major back damage if you don't use proper form when shoveling. The best thing to remember is to carry most of the weight in your arms and legs - not your back. Using your back too much can cause serious pain. That said, shoveling is a great cardio exercise. Removing snow for 30 minutes can burn between 200 and 300 calories, depending on your body weight.

A problem becomes a great workout.A problem becomes a great workout.

3. Scraping
Even once you've gotten your vehicle out from the heavy layers of snow, there's still bound to be a lot of ice covering the windows. That means you've got to get the ice scraper out and chisel away at the windshield, side mirrors and windows. Before you begin, start the car so it can warm up and make your job a little easier. Scraping ice off your car might not be as fun as going to the gym, but it is a good bit of cardio exercise.

4. Melting
Oftentimes when the temperature rises just a little, it can cause the snow to melt and eventually refreeze into ice. This can be extremely dangerous to pedestrians. You've got to get the salt out and put down a good layer over the ice to make sure it breaks up before anyone walks on it. Carrying the bag of salt is a great workout for your upper body, and you'll get plenty of cardio as you carefully traverse the icy landscape.