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Top Calorie-Burning Winter Outdoor Activities

Top Calorie-burning Outdoor Winter Activities from the Iowa DNRNeed to work off those Valentine’s Day chocolates or finally make good on a New Year’s Resolution? Or just looking a fun activity to try this winter weekend? Try these top outdoor activities for burning calories:

All calories burned are calculated for a 170-pound person per hour. Those weighing less will burn fewer calories, while those weighing more will burn a greater amount of calories.

Cross-country skiing

Glide along the trail, taking in the fresh winter air and looking for wildlife. Look for parks with groomed trails. With moderate effort, you’ll burn 696 calories an hour, or with light effort, 526 calories.

Ice skating
In areas where it’s permitted and ice conditions allow, ice skating is a great way to get active outdoors in the winter (as long as you don’t mind falling now and then!). In one hour of skating, you’ll burn 541 calories.

Sledding and tobogganing
You might ask, how many calories can you burn while flying down a hill? Well, don’t forget the repeated treks back up that hill, and you’ll rack up 541 calories burned in an hour (and a lot of thrills).

Stream fishing
Yes, you can still fish a stream in waders in the winter – look to the trout streams of northeast Iowa, which rarely freeze. In an hour of angling, you’ll burn 464 calories. Not wanting to get in the water? You can still burn 309 calories in an hour by fishing and walking along the bank.

Hiking and snowshoeing
Hiking and snowshoeing through the woods will both burn 410 calories and create a lot of smiles.

Kayaking
Yes, winter paddling is a possibility! Look for open water below dams of large reservoirs – check out these other tips for winter paddling. In an hour, you’ll burn 387 calories.

Birdwatching
Even a slow walk while birdwatching will burn 193 calories! Find a birding trail to start your trek.

Search state and county parks by available activities with our interactive Healthy and Happy Outdoors map.


For more ideas, check out our Healthy and Happy Outdoors, Take it Outside and We Love Winter in Iowa boards on Pinterest.

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