6 Great Tips for Walking Indoors in the Winter

by Suzanne Hiscock
Unless you’re an extreme winter sports enthusiast, it can be difficult to get enough exercise during the cold winter months. That’s especially true if your favorite form of exercise is walking.

Sometimes it’s just too cold and windy. Or the sidewalks are slippery with ice. Even unseasonably warm temperatures can cause rainy conditions making you want to stay inside and hide under a warm blanket.

But winter is no excuse to stop walking and exercising. Walking is one way to lose weight that anybody can do.

Here are six great ideas for indoor walking, so you can still burn those calories and get fit on the coldest, darkest days.

See: Calories Burned While Walking 2.0 mph

Ways to Walk Indoors at Home

Hands down, the easiest ,most convenient and cheapest way to walk indoors is to do it in your home.

March or Walk in Place

This one might sound boring, at first. But there are plenty of ways to make it more exciting.

You can watch your favorite TV or Netflix shows while walking in place. And if you tell yourself you’re only allowed to watch those shows while walking, you’ll quickly get into a walking habit.

 
Tip: Add in Puddle Jumpers. Alternate walking with jump from side to side. Make this even more difficult by jumping over bigger “puddles” and/or swing your arms wide.

To make walking in place more fun, check out YouTube for “indoor walking” videos.

This indoor walking video by Jessica Smith is a lot of fun -- even though it’s not just walking. She’ll get you doing toe taps and arm circles before you know it.


 

Walk Around Your House

Set your own pace by walking around your house if you’ve got a big enough place. :Loop through rooms, around tables and furniture. You can even pick things up and tidy as you go along.

A tidy house after a workout? Sounds like a match made in heaven.

​Don’t Forget the Stairs

Walking around the house is even better if you have stairs. Go up and down the stairs -- carefully, of course. Go up two at time if you can, to really get your heart pumping.

Create a Circuit To Burn Even More Calories

You can even do circuit training around your house if you want to take your workout up a notch.

Designate each room with one particular exercise and do each exercise as you walk from room to room.

An example of an indoor circuit would be:
  1. Walk to kitchen and do 10 push ups against the counter.
  2. Walk to the living room and do 10 squats to couch.
  3. Walk to the bedroom and do 10 crunches on the bed.
  4. Walk to the front door and do 10 jumping jacks.
  5. Walk around the house a few times, and then start the circuit again.
 
Tip: Get your arms involved if you want to burn even more calories. You’ll be amazed at how this can get your heart pumping.

See: Calories Burned While Walking 3.0mph

Ways to Walk Indoors Away From Home

If staying indoors too much is driving you a bit stir-crazy, there are plenty of ways to walk indoors outside of the home.

Mall Walking

No window shopping allowed while you’re mall walking! You want to get moving and not slow down. Keep away from the food court, too.

Most malls open early and allow mall walkers a safe place to walk early in the morning. Call ahead to find out if your mall offers this service.

Find an Indoor Walking Track

Check out the gyms in your area to see if they have an indoor walking track.

Your local high school, community college or university might have one available outside of school hours.

You can also google “indoor tracks near me” and see what Google pulls up.  Other Google searches you can try are: “Places to walk indoors near me” and “Free indoor walking tracks near me”.

What Are The Benefits of Walking?

It doesn’t matter where you walk, as long as you’re walking. It’s so simple to do and yet it’s probably one of the most beneficial exercises you can do for your body.

Take a look at some of the benefits to walking regularly:

Both high and moderate intensity walking has been proven to be just as beneficial as any aerobic fitness workout. Low intensity walking describes walking at 45-55% of your highest heart rate, and you would need to walk 5-7 days each week for best results. But, if you walk at a high intensity level, which would be 65-75% of highest heart rate, you can achieve the same results in as little as 3 days a week.

See:  Target Heart Zones
  • Regular walking can lower the risk for many diseases, like cancer, diabetes and glaucoma.
  • It has been proven that those who walk regularly live longer than those who lead less active lives.
  • Moderate intensity walking is believed to boost your immune system. This is another reason that walking is so important in winter!
Walking gives your whole body a workout. You don’t need any special equipment, classes or even skills. It’s something that you’re doing anyway, just take the time to turn it into a workout regime, and you won’t believe the results you’ll see. Winter doesn’t need to get you down – get walking!

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About the Author

Suzanne is the owner of FitWatch. She's had strong interest in nutrition and exercise for over 20 years, and is an ACE-certified Lifestyle & Weight Management Coach. Back in 2002, she started FitWatch.com because she wanted to help people lose weight by creating helpful tools and calculators. A huge fan of calorie counting, Suzanne created the FitWatch Fitness Tracker to make it easy for people to count their calories.