Cold-weather runs have their place in every exercise repertoire—but they’re not the only (or the most effective) way to sweat outdoors when the temps drop. Plus, on snowy days, you need something a little more low-impact that will also leave your muscles burning under all of those layers.
Here, we created a fun, barre-inspired total-body toning workout that you can do outdoors. All of the exercises in this 15 to 20 minute workout target multiple muscle groups at the same time. You will be instantly feeling the burn and shake just like you would in a typical barre class—but in a quarter of the time.
Since it doesn’t require any equipment, you can do this workout anywhere. In fact, to make your session more scenic, bundle up and walk a few minutes to your favourite wintry spot. All you need is something to hold onto—like a bench, tree, or railing—then follow the step-by-step workout below. Don’t forget your gloves!
Lunge with a Hold:
- Hold onto a bench/tree/railing with your right hand and bring left hand to hip.
- Place feet hip-width apart and parallel, then step back with left leg.
- Bend both knees, coming into a lunge position (front knee is at 90 degrees).
- Pull abs in tight.
- Take back knee to the floor then back up halfway for 30 seconds; hold halfway up, going up one inch and down one inch for 30 seconds; do small pulses for 30 seconds; hold at the bottom for 10 seconds.
- Repeat on the left side.
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Extension into Fold Over:
- Start by holding onto a bench/tree/railing with right hand.
- Take your feet hip-width apart and parallel.
- Extend left leg in front of body straight with flexed foot (knee cap should be facing up).
- Soften standing knee and pull abs in. Lift leg up one inch and down one inch for 30 seconds, then complete tiny lifts up for 30 seconds (a).
- Then, hinge forward from your waist, and bring your left leg behind you with knee bent and toe pointed (b).
- Make small circles with your knee for 30 seconds, then reverse direction for 30 seconds.
- Lift up one inch and down one inch for 30 seconds.
- Then complete small lifts just going up for 30 seconds.
- Repeat on the other side.
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Curtsy into Standing Straight Leg:
- Start by facing a bench/tree/railing and hold on with both hands.
- Bring heels together, toes apart, and step your right foot behind your body so it’s parallel with your left shoulder.
- Bend both knees coming into a curtsy position.
- Shoulders should be stacked over hips with abs pulled in.
- Do small pulses down for 30 seconds.
- Then move up one inch then down one inch for 30 seconds (a).
- Then, shift your weight into front leg and stand up (keeping a soft bend in standing knee), straightening back leg and pointing toe (b).
- Once in position, lift right leg up one inch and down one inch for 30 seconds; move leg down to ground and back up for 30 seconds; then complete small lifts up for 30 seconds.
- Repeat on other side.
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- Start with your right hand holding onto a bench/tree/railing and left hand behind head.
- Bring your heels together, toes apart, and extend your left leg out to the side.
- Soften your standing knee and pull abs in.
- Bring knee up toward elbow and lean elbow toward knee, repeat for 30 seconds.
- Then, hold at the top, doing small pulses for 30 seconds.
- Repeat the sequence twice on each side.
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- Using a bench, stairs, or snow mound, turn so you’re facing the opposite direction.
- Place hands (fingers facing forward) under your shoulders.
- Legs should be hip-width apart and parallel.
- Flex feet and bend elbows.
- Move down one inch and up one inch for 30 seconds; complete small pulses for 30 seconds.
- Repeat three times.