5 Winter Activities for Triathletes

Chances are, one of the reasons you like triathlon is for the variety. If you don't feel like running, you can always go for a ride. Too cold outside? Swim laps instead. And if need a break from all three triathlon sports, winter is the best time to switch things up even more.

Jesse Kropelnicki, endurance coach and founder of QT2 Systems says, "The further away from race day it is, the more appropriate it is to use cross-training efforts."

So have fun this winter and reconnect with the less stressful, more playful side of sports. Here are five winter activities that will get your heart rate up, keep you fit, and help you feel strong and fresh for next season.

Hiking

Soak in the scenery you missed when logging bike and run intervals on pavement. Stepping off road in winter can be very meditative, allowing you to slow down mentally but still release stress physically.

"At QT2 we count hiking as 35 percent bike volume and 35 percent run volume," says Kropelnicki. And while hiking, you can burn 400 calories per hour, which will help you maintain cardiovascular fitness and endurance in the offseason.

Under snow? Strap on a pair of snowshoes before hitting the trails. Tromping through the deep stuff helps you burn calories even faster.

Heading out:

Yoga

You put it off all year because you were too busy running, biking and swimming. Well, now's the time: Yoga is a great way to relax during the stressful holiday season. Not only does yoga have a multitude of health benefits—according to the Mayo Clinic yoga can help lower blood pressure, improve balance and flexibility, and reduce stress—it is the perfect complement to your triathlon training. Yoga can help prevent injuries, improve strength, and help get you in the right space mentally to come back strong next year.

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