It’s that time of the year in New England when the weather is crisp and the days are short. By the time 5 pm rolls around, it can feel like bedtime. Cold weather, darker evenings, and cold and flu season can make you want to stay indoors until spring. Not to mention, the change in weather can lead to what many call seasonal affective disorder or the winter blues.
It can be challenging to find a reason to get off your couch, but staying active regardless of the weather is an important part of maintaining your health. At Atrius Health, we’re here to support you on your health journey, so read on for a few fun ideas to stay active during the cold winter months.
Winter sports are an exciting and fast-paced way to blow off some steam throughout the cold months. Thankfully, in New England, there are great options all around us. You can ski, snowboard, or even go snow tubing. There are several great ski areas across Massachusetts, including Blue Hills in Canton, Nashoba Valley in Westford, and Wachusett Mountain in Princeton. There are also a variety of ski resorts in New Hampshire or Vermont if you’re looking for a quick weekend getaway.
Ice skating is another classic winter activity fit for kids and adults alike. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned skater, ice skating gets your heart rate up while you spend quality time with family and friends. In Boston, Frog Pond is well known for its winter ice skating, and The Rink at 401 Park in Fenway is another convenient option in the city with onsite skate rentals. South of Boston, the family can enjoy Winter Skate at Patriot Place in Foxboro.
The Trustees have many activities happening throughout the winter at their properties located throughout Massachusetts. Enjoy a daytime or moonlit hike, discover a spot to sled or snowshoe, or sign up for a cooking class for you or the kids.
Did you know the Franklin Park and Stone Zoos in Boston and Stoneham are open year-round? Grab the kids, bundle up, and check out the animals! Visit their website for hours and special events.
Calling all dog lovers: New England is home to some thrilling dogsledding experiences to get you out of the house and into the great, snowy outdoors. Several sanctuaries in New Hampshire and Vermont offer beginner dogsledding tours and educational experiences. You can learn about the history of dog sledding, meet some furry friends, and satisfy your inner adrenaline junkie with the professionals leading the pack.
All around Massachusetts, there are winter markets with locally sourced produce, baked goods, and handmade wares. These markets are a great way to stay social, support local businesses, and get your steps in. The Brighton Winter Market, Somerville Winter Farmers’ Market, and the Lexington Winter Farmers’ Market are all popular choices for the Greater Boston area.
Sugar houses or shacks are iconic New England establishments that can satisfy your sweet tooth and make a great educational day trip. These houses are small cabins where you can watch professionals collect sap from maple trees and make maple syrup. At sugar houses, you can expect to learn more about maple trees, the history of maple syrup, and how to choose authentic syrup when grocery shopping. There are many sugar houses across New England, including Worthington, MA; Chester, NH; Arlington, VT; Durham, CT; Richmond, RI; and Limerick, ME.
The cold and dark New England winter days ahead can make you want to stay in bed, but it’s important to have fun, stay active, and enjoy all that New England has to offer during the winter. If you start to feel the winter blues take over, contact your Atrius Health provider, who can help with a diagnosis and treatment plan.