Working out during summer is so simple. You throw on your favorite leggings, head to brunch and seek out a studio. Once snow starts falling, the thought of slipping into a small bathroom to change into a tight tank top is far less appealing. Luckily, these ten wellness experts want to change the way you think about working out in winter. New York’s top nutritionists, vegan restaurateurs and boutique class instructors weigh in on why you should put down the Seamless and start stretching, no matter how frosty you’re feeling. Prepare for the big chill with tips on the warmest leggings, tastiest carb alternatives and coolest classes.
1. Sadie Kurzban, founder of ((305)) Fitness: “I’ll switch gears to things that really nourish my body when I’m cold, so that I don’t spend all day pigging out on other things. I definitely recommend group fitness classes if people haven’t tried them. It can feel very monotonous to go running outside or to the gym. You can come to ((305)) on Mondays, you can go to SLT on Tuesdays and switch it up, but I think having a place that you feel the culture and the vibe and the community is important. As the weather’s changing and it’s getting drier it’s important that we spend extra time stretching after we work out. Once you sweat, you don’t want to run out the door without putting your jacket on. Even if you feel warm you really want to bundle up, because shocking your muscles and joints is not good for your body. Easing your way from indoors to outdoors is really important.”
2. Payal Kadakia, founder of ClassPass: “I love going to Circuit of Change, PatriciaFit and Exhale. We definitely notice seasonal changes in the way people workout, and in the winter months yoga is especially popular followed closely by cycling. It also happens to be one of our most active seasons right after the New Year. I’m a big fan of Michi, Tory Sport and James Perse.”
3. Chloe Coscarelli, chef and partner at by CHLOE.: “I love making soup in the winter—it’s easy to make, versatile and leaves you with leftovers for the week. One of my favorite recipes, and our current market soup at by CHLOE., is Sweet ‘N’ Spicy Sweet Potato Soup with kale, coconut curry and quinoa. I put pomegranate on everything in the winter—from the bright burst of flavor from the seeds to making a pomegranate reduction, there is so much to enjoy out of winter produce. If I’m looking to cut out carbs, I always like to swap the carb with an equally hearty alternative. So, instead of a pasta-based lasagna, I’ll opt for zucchini or eggplant or take it one step further and use hearty seeds and legumes like lentils and quinoa to fill me up.”
4. Jennifer Kass, wellness writer: “I recommend lots of lemon water and healthy fats like coconut oil and avocado for moisture and hydration. I love Briohny Smyth’s online yoga classes. This year I’m adding indoor tennis to my routine for the days I want to move faster and get myself out of the apartment.”
5. Alexandra Perez Bonetti, founder of bari: “My favorite winter workout is bari bounce, our signature trampoline cardio-sculpting class. It’s really, really fun—you’re essentially dancing on a trampoline to the best music ever—not to mention a great way to (literally) warm up when it’s freezing outside. I’m a normal person with normal cravings, so when winter comes around, I want pasta, carbs and really any comforting foods. My favorite recipes call on vegetables to stand in for the carb-heavy usual suspects (like pasta and rice); some go-tos are cauliflower rice sautéed in coconut oil with caramelized onions and daikon noodles with ginger and jalapeños thrown into broth instead of Pho. My actual workout takes place indoors, but I layer up for my commute with this wicking Outdoor Voices hoodie or this Koral overcoat.”
6. Karla Misjan, founder of SYNCSTUDIO: “I have been loving a pair of new leggings I recently scooped up by Electric & Rose. They have a really nice thickness and compression to them! I love wearing Ohm K (started by teachers at SYNCSTUDIO) and nicepipes leg and arm warmers, founded by one of my friends, Lisa Binderow. During the winter, my body craves a slower pace and more restorative work.
7. Bridget Bennett, nutritionist for Indie Fresh: “My go to winter work-out usually involves getting outside since I don’t like being stuck indoors during cold winter months. My favorite foods are rich tasting soups and stews; all-time favorite continues to be Indie Fresh Bison Borsht, not only so tasty but loaded with beets, cabbage and lean bison for excellent protein and blood building iron. When fresh, local fruits aren’t in season all winter I tend to gravitate towards other colorful soups as well, like butternut or broccoli and throw in a handful of fresh kale or spinach while it’s hot. If I can’t motivate to get myself outside (or maybe it’s too icy?) then I crank the dance music and have a 20 minute all-out dance party with my two kids! Sweaty Betty has great super warm base layers that you can wear under any other outdoor gear and also thermal running leggings for when it’s really chilly out.”
8. Dina Kaplan, founder of The Path meditation: “If you’re going out to a lot of holiday parties and stressed about family time, you have a tendency to eat a little bit less healthy and then that can reduce your immunity. If you’re not a meditator, just try to take 5-10 minutes in the morning. Sit with your back straight and focus your entire mind on the sensation of the breath as it comes in and out of your nostrils.”
9. Kimberly Odom, holistic nutritionist: “The Winter Beauty Smoothie is a great source of B vitamins, potassium, manganese, vitamin C, biotin and healthy fats. Eat your fluids in the form of fresh pressed juices, soups, stews, green smoothies and water based fruits and vegetables. Add chia seeds into your diet as they are hydrophilic and can absorb up to 10 times their weight in water. If you are in Manhattan check out the bone broth from Brodo Broth Company in the East Village. The skin also needs a workout during winter months for detoxification purposes. Dry brushing your body with a high quality boar bristle brush stimulates circulations, promotes lymphatic drainage and removes dead skin cells. Saunas are a great way to rejuvenate the body and mind during the winter. Foods to add into your diet during are kale, pomegranates, sweet potatoes, winter squash, citrus fruits, cabbage, collard greens and rooted vegetables like carrots, beets and yams.”