Like many Canadians, I dread winter. But although I’m a winter grouch, deep down I’m an optimist so I tried to find some advantages to my least-favourite season.

Skiing, skating, snowshoeing …

Winter sports are a wonderful part of winter. But as Dave Berry says, “The problem with winter sports is that – follow me closely here – they generally take place in winter.” The good thing about winter sports is that because of the cold, you’ll burn extra calories! 

Scenery

Winter means snow and that means spectacular scenic landscapes. Best of all, scenery is something you can enjoy outside while running or inside while gazing out at the snow-covered evergreens in your front yard. Win-win.

Puffy Coats

Let’s hear it for winter outerwear! In addition to keeping you toasty, those puffy jackets and long coats hide the bumps and bulges you’ve been trying to lose at the gym. Everyone looks like a Michelin man in winter! There’s no judging and no eye contact either – people are too busy scanning the sidewalks for ice. 

Adapting Your Summer Sport to Winter 

If you’re not a winter sports enthusiast and prefer running or cycling, no problem! You can easily adjust to winter by using different gear. Besides adding to your collection of sports equipment, it’s darn fun shop (and wear new stuff.) Another plus for winter.

Vacation

Winter is a great time to get away on vacation! Get a break from the cold weather and go somewhere you can exercise without boots and parka! Or visit a cool European city in the off-season and enjoy getting in your 10,000 steps surrounded by a new culture! Either way, that’s a win.

Food

The food in winter is fantastic! Soups! Hot chocolate, candy canes and holiday goodies! Not to mention Christmas dinners, cozy fondues and sticky toffee puddings – definitely a menu for cold-weather – and calories. (See ‘Skiing’ above.)

Holidays

There are more holidays in winter than summer – yes, it’s true! Christmas vacation is in winter, and Thanksgiving and Easter often have wintery weather too – at least in the colder parts of Canada. There’s also Remembrance Day and Family Day, so that’s good, right? More time for you to go to the gym to work on the bumps and bulges you’ve hidden under your puffy coat.

So this year as winter arrives on my doorstep, I’ve already ordered new, winter cycling gear, booked a vacation in Mexico, unpacked my puffy coat and looked up some decadent dessert recipes. All while looking out the window at the snow-covered scenery in my own front yard. 

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