Try Snowshoeing for Winter Cross-Training!
Snowshoeing is a great sport for the whole family and it’s a very easy sport to get into. How easy? “Snowshoeing is a 12-step program: take 12 steps and you’re an expert!” says Graham Gephart, Global Brand Manager from K2 Outdoor and Tubbs Snowshoes.
Snowshoeing is a superb winter activity: it burns more calories than alpine skiing and can be done anywhere there is some snow. It’s a relatively inexpensive sport to get into and it is a great way to get outside and enjoy trekking through new-fallen snow. The calories you burn will vary according to the terrain you snowshoe through: is it hilly or relatively flat? Are you running or going at an easy pace? Breaking a trail through deep snow will take more energy than sticking to packed trails. It will help you keep your fitness level up over the winter if you regularly snowshoe. Runners may enjoy the added benefits to their fitness from running in snowshoes. If your area of the country has snowshoe races, sign up for a race and find out how fun they can be!
“Whether you’re going full race pace, or just out there enjoying nature, you’ll benefit,” says Neal Henderson, sports science director at Colorado’s Boulder Center for Sports Medicine. “There are also balance and stability requirements, and your gluteal muscles will be more involved because you tend to have a wider gait when walking in snowshoes. If the snow is deep, your hip flexors will be engaged, too.”
Snowshoes are generally sized by weight, but there are a few that are made just for women. Traditional snowshoes have more floatation for traveling over deep snow and snowshoes such as Tubbs Flex-Trek snowshoes are better on packed or groomed trails. The Flex-Trek snowshoes are designed to provide good traction and flexibility in the heel which allows the wearer to walk in a normal and more comfortable walking motion. If you are considering snowshoes for running and racing, consider buying lightweight snowshoes that are made for groomed trails.
This short video has a lot of great information on the basics of snowshoes–if you’re looking to get into snowshoeing or to buy some soon–check this out!
The Well-Dressed Snowshoer
Snowshoeing is an active sport and requires only dressing to stay warm, dry and comfortable. The right clothing is worth it when it keeps you warm on a snowy, cold day. New technologies with fabrics and insulations are making apparel more breathable and waterproof and are worth the investment.
Base Layer -This is the layer next to your skin. As you work out, you’ll sweat and if you’re wearing cotton, it will soon be soaked and you’ll become wet and cold. Look for long underwear with technical fabrics that can to wick the sweat away from your skin and keep you dry. Mid-weight socks with similar wicking properties will keep your feet warm.
Mid-Layer- This layer should insulate, keeping out the cold and keeping in the warmth by trapping air between the fibers. This layer can be a vest, sweater or pull-over and are commonly fleece or wool. On a sunny day, the base and mid-layer may be all you need to wear.
Outer Layer- This layer will protect you from the harsher elements of winter such as snow, sleet, rain and wind. The exterior layer is often a shell and pants that can repel water while letting perspiration evaporate.
Accessories-Complete your winter workout clothing with a hat or (micro) fleece headband, a pair of good quality gloves, and sunglasses (necessary if it’s sunny or when the snow is blowing into your face). For snowshoeing, heavy boots are not preferred, instead wear weatherized hiking boots or if you are running or racing on your snowshoes, trail running shoes may be better suited. Lastly, gaiters will keep the snow from getting into your shoes and socks and will give extra protection from the cold and wet snow.
Romp To Stomp
This is the 8th season of the Tubbs Romp to Stomp Snowshoe series, and over the previous 7 seasons, 1.3 million dollars have been raised in the fight against breast cancer in North America. This fun snowshoe race/walk series is a fun way to spend a winter’s day and benefits local affiliates of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, supporting those affected by breast cancer and their families. If you don’t have snowshoes, come early and get a pair of snowshoes for a free demo.
Each of these breast cancer snowshoe events feature a 3K or 5K snowshoe walk or 3K snowshoe race (plus a ”Lil’ Romper” dash for young children.)
- New Jersey -January 22, 2011
- Vermont –January 29, 2011
- Utah–February 5, 2011
- Washington–February 12, 2011
- Ontario–February 19, 2011 (Funds raised will go to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation)
- Oregon–February 26, 2011
- Colorado–March 5, 2011
We are pleased to be helping with the Romp to Stomp just outside of Park City, UT. this coming Saturday, February 5, 2011 and help give away some great products that have been donated by some of our favorite retailers. If you’re there–introduce yourself (Beth will be taking the photos!)
Here’s a Great Give-away to Warm You up on a Cold Day!
Hydro Flask has a great double-walled vacuumed insulated bottle perfect for keeping hot drinks hot for up to 12 hours. You won’t burn your hand holding the bottle when it’s filled with hot drinks and should you prefer cold drinks, you will not feel the cold sweat either. This stainless steel Hydroflask bottle will keep cold drinks cold for up to 24 hours.
We’d love to give this great Hydro Flask bottle to one of our readers and you can win it by just telling us how you stay fit over the winter. Do you bike all year or are there other activities you enjoy through the winter? Be sure to use a real (first) name and e-mail so we can get a hold of you. This contest will run from now until February 18th.
(Contest limited to mailing addresses in the US & Canada.)
CONGRATULATIONS to Rich Holler from Denver, Indiana!! Rich is the winner of Hydro Flask bottle. Hey Rich … tell us what you think!! Remember – it’s good for HOT and COLD liquids!!! ENJOY!!!!!