If you’re one of the tens of millions of people impacted by this weekend’s nor’easter aka Snowzilla aka David Snowie, this post is for you.
If you’re my brother and his wife avoiding this whole mess in Hawaiian paradise, you’re lucky I kind of still like you.
For the rest of us, today gives us many things: the first major snowfall of the year, dozens of instagramable moments, proof that it’s somehow still interesting to watch the weather report on repeat for seven hours straight. Unfortunately, a snow day also has a way of offering something else: the uncanny ability to help us pack back on those holiday pounds we’ve been working to shed all January long.
Of course, I certainly understand how it happens: Not only is it too snowy to get to the gym, but there’s also nothing like a blizzard to make a person crave comfort food. It’s so wonder the papers have been reporting that rather than bread and milk, the first items to sell out at east coast grocery stores were familiar, delicious items like frozen pizza, cookie dough and spicy cheez-its.
If you have the metabolism of a Hemsworth, or you’ve been outside shoveling all day, by all means treat ‘yo self to some DiGiorno. But if you’re like me and training for a spring half marathon where every extra pound of body weight is going to make it tougher to cross that finish line in under two hours, you may not want to enter the weekend four pounds heavier than you went into it on account off some inconsiderate blizzard. So in this weather, what’s a health-conscious girl to do? I don’t have all the answers, but here are some tips from one snowed in runner to another:
- Eat slow food. It’s tempting to down a bag of goldfish in weather like this, but heavily processed and ready-made products aren’t going to leave you feeling satisfied for long. Instead, take advantage of being stuck inside by braising a stew in your crockpot all day (I made this one) or baking some homemade whole-wheat bread. You might still eat yourself sick by somehow finishing 1.5 of the 2 loaves before sundown, but at least you know the ingredients in it are nutritious and filling.
- Get moving, a little. You’re not going to knock it out of the park today fitness wise, but going a whole day without so much as getting off the coach will leave restless and uncomfortable come bedtime. You can get your heart rate up lots of ways: shoveling snow, vacuuming your apartment, doing squats or lunges anytime the newscaster says “record year.” I chose to do this 45-minute yoga for runners routine from the comfort of my bedroom, and it definitely wore me out enough to enjoy my extended shavasana aka post-yoga nap.
- Enjoy a day of rest. Runners are good at a lot of things — bagel consumption, porta-potty etiquette, talking about our sport with anyone who’ll listen — but we are notoriously terrible at taking a day off. We tend to think more miles = better athletes … And then we’re always surprised when we end up nursing shin splints and stress fractures with each training cycle. Recovery is key to improved performance, so allow yourself to enjoy this forced day of relaxation. Sleep in, take a nap, read a book, run a bath, open some red wine, watch a movie, or cuddle up with your sweetheart after coming in from the storm. Keira certainly did.
So that’s my advice for maintaining until the snow melts. What other strategies are you using?