Staying active during the winter can be challenging as the temperatures start dropping and snow banks cover the sidewalks that were once used for running. Because running and biking outside are more challenging, people often resort to indoor gyms (which can be rather monotonous) or just do nothing active at all. Fortunately, Boston offers plenty of fun winter activities to keep you moving! Here are six ways to stay active in Boston this winter:
1. Go ice skating on Frog Pond. Instead of complaining about the slippery ice-coated streets, go ice skating in Boston Common. The Frog Pond is open from 10:00am to 9:00pm Sunday through Thursday and is open late until 10:00pm on Friday and Saturday. Admission is only $5 and you can rent skates for $9. It’s best to go on a weekday as the pond gets crowded on weekends. Afterwards, you can warm yourself up with a hot chocolate from one of the many nearby vendors. http://www.bostonfrogpond.com/
2. Climb the Bunker Hill monument. If you want a great view of Boston, including the snow-covered harbor, go climb the Bunker Hill monument located on Breeds Hill in Charleston. This monument marks the site of the first major Revolutionary War battle. Climbing the 294 steps will warm you up no matter how cold it is outside. The view at the top is much more rewarding than climbing a Stairmaster at the gym. And, you can’t beat the price: it’s free!
3. Sled down the hills at Jamaica Pond. Buy a cheap sled at the hardware store and head over to Jamaica Plain. If you don’t want to dish out the money, try using a trash bag (though it is not as comfortable). Climbing to the top of the hill is a great workout with a fun reward waiting at the top. Picture the wind rushing past you as you gleefully slide down the slope. If you are tired of climbing, have a go at the “Sugar Bowl Challenge,” an inverted hill where you can try to build enough momentum on the way down to make it up and out of the bowl on the other side.
4. Cross-country ski on the Weston Ski Track. If you are looking for a real workout, try cross-country skiing, which uses more muscles in your body than any other sport! Even if you have never skied before, cross-country skiing is relatively easy to pick up. The Weston Ski Track features 15k of groomed trails and is located less than 20 minutes away in Weston, MA. If you don’t have a car, you can take the Green D Line to Riverside then walk the last mile to the tracks as a warm-up. Trail passes cost $15 per day, and can rent all the equipment you need for an additional $15. http://www.skiboston.com/skitrack/skitrack.php
5. Go rock climbing at one of Boston’s many gyms. It may be an indoor activity, but rock climbing can still be an exciting and fun way to build core strength during the winter. This is a good backup activity for when it is really just too cold outside. Try checking out Rock Spot’s student nights on Fridays and Sundays from 7:00-10:00pm, where you can get a lesson and gear for just $15 with your student ID.
6. Play in the snow. You did it in your childhood, why not do it now? Build a snowman. Dig a fort. Make snow angels. Have a snowball fight. Remember how much fun snow can be. It’s free!
Natalie Obermeyer is a first year student in the Nutrition Communication and Masters of Public Health programs. When she is not studying, reading, or writing, she loves to run, hike, ski, play outdoors in the sunshine, and experiment in the kitchen.