Monday, January 24, 2011

Loyola Center for Fitness Expert Gives Tips to Boost Exercise Routine this Winter

MAYWOOD, Ill. – It’s cold. The ground is covered with snow and ice and the amount of sunshine seen each day is minimal—not the most inspirational time for fitness. Though your body may be layered under sweatshirts and coats, staying active and healthy is important no matter what the temperature is outside. “It’s hard to stay motivated in the winter. When temperatures plummet, the last thing we want to do is leave the comfort and warmth of our home. But winter is not a good excuse to give up our fitness routines,” said Kara Smith, personal trainer and special events coordinator at the Loyola Center for Fitness. Here’s just a few ways to get out, exercise and have a good time in the winter: Downhill skiing Cross-country skiing Snowshoeing Hockey or ice skating Build a snowman Shovel snow, but remember to lift with your legs, not your back and use a small shovel so you are not lifting too much weight. Sledding Start a snowball fight, preferably with people you know.

Whatever you choose to do outdoors make sure your body is prepared for the weather:

Wear layers. This helps trap heat and will keep you warmer. Wear a hat, gloves and scarf to limit the risk of frostbite. Drink lots of water. Winter is a very dry time of year and your body needs the extra water to stay hydrated.

If you need more incentive, try these weight-maintenance tips to get you off the couch: Keep a pair of summer shorts in the drawer and try them on every couple of weeks to make sure they still fit. Find an exercise partner. Schedule time with a friend to exercise and get together for healthy potlucks and weigh-ins. Find out what fruits and veggies are in season and discover new recipes you can share at the healthy potlucks. Purchase a gym membership. Most fitness centers have promotions going on in January. Try something new. Purchase a new fitness video you can do at home or start a new fitness activity to keep you going till spring. Winter doesn’t last forever, so stop hibernating and get out and enjoy what the season has to offer. For media inquiries, please contact Evie Polsley at or call (708) 216-5313 or (708) 417-5100.

About Loyola University Health System

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is part of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. Loyola University Medical Center’s campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of Chicago’s Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. At the heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Trinity Health is a national Catholic health system with an enduring legacy and a steadfast mission to be a transforming and healing presence within the communities we serve. Trinity is committed to being a people-centered health care system that enables better health, better care and lower costs. Trinity Health has 88 hospitals and hundreds of continuing care facilities, home care agencies and outpatient centers in 21 states and 119,000 employees.