Winter Fitness

Stay in Shape While Staying Indoors

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By Henry Ford Health System Staff

You may love gazing at the snowflakes, but trekking through the slush is another story. There are safer ways to get a winter workout—by staying indoors.

Find Fitness Indoors

It’s always smart to get your doctor’s approval before you start an exercise program, says Michael Dunn, M.D. This is especially true if you have diabetes or another long-term medical condition.

Once you get the go-ahead from your doctor, try to pick a low-impact aerobic activity that you can do indoors and is easier on your joints. Some good activities:

  • Mall walking
  • Riding a stationary bike
  • Walking on a treadmill

You might want to consider joining your local health club to take advantage of the pool and other equipment.

How Much Activity Do You Need?

To improve your heart and lung health, try to get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise every day that makes you breathe hard.

But don’t feel that you need to do all 30 minutes at once. It’s OK to start slow and split up your activity throughout the day.

Besides aerobic exercise, strength training is also important. Using weights—at home or at a gym—can help your muscles and bones stay strong. Try to do strength-building exercises at least twice a week.

Chances are there is an indoor exercise that’s right for you. So this winter, don’t hibernate. Stay fit and healthy with an indoor workout.

Micheal Dunn, M.D., is a pulmonologist and critical care medicine physician at Henry Ford Medical Center – Columbus in Novi. For an appointment with a primary care provider, visit or call 1-800-HENRYFORD (436-7936).