Canadians are used to cold, long, and sometimes brutal winters. While the frost and snow can be beautiful, poor weather conditions make venturing outdoors a challenge. For this reason, cabin fever can start to develop as we find ourselves indoors for more extended periods of time.
While there is nothing better than being outside in the fresh air, there are still a variety of indoor activities that can help you maintain an active lifestyle while also improving your overall mental and physical wellbeing. Origin Active Lifestyle Communities wants to share a few ways you can combat cabin fever this winter season!
1. Learn a New Hobby, Skill, or Language
On those winter days when the weather makes travel difficult, opt to learn a new skill or hobby. Activities like sewing, crafting, or painting allow you to stay busy, and expand your creativity. Learning a foreign language can help improve memory, cognitive abilities, and allow for better decision-making skills. Even as we age, we should never stop learning! These and other activities allow for personal growth while keeping your mind sharp.
2. Stay Connected & Social
If you’re feeling the winter blues, socialization may be the mood booster you need. With travel being tougher during the winter season, it can be easy to find yourself alone, but socialization or seeing a familiar face can help you beat cabin fever.
We are fortunate enough to live in a world where we can stay connected to family and friends with the touch of a button! Make it a point to regularly video call children or grandchildren, loved ones, and neighbors. Use social networking sites, such as Facebook, to find and catch up with old friends or classmates. However you choose to do it, take the time to reach out to the people that are important to you.
3. Safe, Indoor Exercises
Indoor exercises can do more than fill up your time and help you avoid cabin fever; certain exercises can even help build and strengthen your immune system. One study found that older adults who got plenty of exercise seemed to prevent the expected decline of their immune systems by about 60 years!
Here are some simple workouts you can do indoors:
- Walking (jogging or running) on a treadmill
- Weight training
- Stationary biking
- Balance training
Participating in any indoor activity that provides physical activity is always a great way to help beat cabin fever. Exercise is good for our bodies, minds, and overall mood. Don’t let the winter season slow you down!
4. Let the Sunshine In
Though it is recommended to keep the shades drawn when you’re trying to conserve heat and energy, opening the blinds and allowing sunshine in is a great way to beat cabin fever. Getting sun during these months isn’t always easy, but it is certainly important to your mental and physical health. A study out of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Ontario, Canada, states that light sources (artificial or natural) are effective in 60%-90% of cases in treating seasonal affective disorders.
The sun is typically one of our primary sources of vitamin D. During the winter, that source is blocked or at least staggered due to overcast weather or being stuck indoors due to inclement weather conditions. Being able to experience and enjoy the sunlight is important; you don’t have to be directly in the sunshine to reap the benefits it provides.
In addition to beating cabin fever, Origin Active Lifestyle Communities wants to ensure you maintain a safe winter season. Read our previous blogs for tips!
We know that staying active can dramatically increase our quality of life as we age. Our Origin Active Lifestyle Communities in Alberta and British Columbia provide our community members with ample indoor activities to promote physical, mental, and emotional health. If you would like to learn more about our communities, we invite you to find your retirement community with us and experience the Origin way!