Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Good Gear + Right Route = Wonderful Winter Walking

Winter walking can be truly wonderful given the right gear and the right route. I lived in Minnesota for over 25 years so I know of what I speak! Here’s my winter walking guidelines for good gear and the right routes.

Good Gear!

Good gear isn’t necessarily expensive or super high tech. To me good gear is gear that fits well and does the job you need done. For winter walking you need gear that holds your body heat comfortably and also breathes. I recommend a “grounds up” approach starting with what you’ll put on your feet. If the snow cover is fairly light (less than 3 or 4 inches) well insulated hiking boots and wool socks will keep your toes toasty for your 25-minute brisk walk. Layer on some long underwear and wind pants or jeans to keep your legs warm and for your torso take the same approach— a long underwear top and a fleece or wool sweater. I like an insulated but light weight coat to cover my core; the main thing I want is wind protection. My final good gear suggestions are mittens or gloves, a neck gaiter and a good warm hat. There you go—you’re ready to walk!

Right Route!

The right route is one that’s easily accessible, safe, and beautiful. Easy access for some of us is right out the door, which is ideal. If your neighborhood is walkable, you can’t beat “out-the-door” for time management! If your right route is not in your immediate neighborhood, make sure it’s well-lit, has little to no ice, is well trafficked by fellow walkers, and is easy to get to so that you will indeed get there on a regular basis. My main right route criteria is no ice—one slip on a hidden patch of ice and your winter walk turns into a winter spill. Avoid this by walking routes that have full sun during the day and are walked frequently.

Keep it simple, easy and doable walking women and you’ll fall in love with wonderful winter walking.

P.S. Through the One Million Women Walking movement, I help you get the exercise you want in just minutes per day so your Self-care and your TO DO list both get handled! Join 1MWW on Patreon for $1/month to get the exercise you want, the accountability, support, motivation and encouragement you need, and the life transformation you yearn for! See you there—I can’t wait to walk with you!

Walking In A Winter Wonderland

“Sleigh bells ring
Are you listening
In the lane
Snow is glistening
A beautiful sight,
We’re happy tonight
Walking in a winter wonderland”

Winter Wonderland was written 83 years ago and since then has been recorded by a mind-boggling range of artists: Frank Sinatra to Ella Fitzgerald, Doris Day to Elvis, Dolly Parton to Billy Idol. If a singer has released a Christmas album, you can bet Winter Wonderland is on it. My favorite version is on James Taylor’s 2004 release, James Taylor: A Christmas Album.

Winter Wonderland is a song that makes me recall the delight I felt as a child when, during the holidays, we’d hear a knock on the door and to our great joy, find a group of Christmas carolers on the porch. How magical, how wonderful, how life-affirming!

So this holiday season, I invite you to take part in the magic by walking in your own winter wonderland, whether it’s on the sugar white beaches of sunny South Florida or in the frozen bitter cold of northern Minnesota. Here’s two wonderful ways to get your walk on in the coming weeks!

  • Caroling! Seriously if you’ve never done it, I can’t recommend it enough! It takes a fair amount of advance planning to organize your own group so I suggest you join an existing group to learn the ropes. Local churches, Meetup, and local singing groups are the three best places to jump on board.
  • A Holiday Lights Walk! Take your family for a walk to look at the holiday lights and decoration. This will quickly become a favorite tradition. If you live in a walking friendly neighborhood, dress for the weather and walk out the door. Invite friends and neighbors to walk with you! If your neighborhood isn’t walking friendly, check to see if your downtown storefronts decorate with holiday light displays. A cup of holiday cheer and a stroll around downtown with your loved ones can be wonderfully fun and entertaining.

This year take the time to walk in the winter wonderland that’s most convenient for you. Make the time, take those you love, get your walk on, and make some memories. Those memories will be the best gifts ever–ones you’ll relive and repeat for years to come.