The Secret to Avoiding Winter Weight Gain

Reminder: we are not bears.

Guy running in winter to stave off winter weight gain.

Contrary to popular belief, when the air outside gets cold, your body doesn't switch into starvation mode. "Many people believe that the body slows its metabolism when the mercury drops, but they're forgetting an important fact," says Milton Stokes, Ph.D., of One Source Nutrition. "Humans aren't bears. We don't hibernate. And as a result, our metabolisms don't fluctuate with the seasons."

Sadly, if you find yourself weighing more than you'd like to during the winter months, you have only your inconsistency—not your body—to blame. "After all, if you're consistent in your exercise habits, there's no need to change your eating patterns," says Stokes. "Unfortunately, many people spend their winters eating a bit more and exercising a bit less."

If that sounds like you, follow Stokes's advice: "Cut 200 calories from your daily diet and broaden your idea of exercise," he says. "If snow prevents you from pounding the pavement, for example, hit the slopes. Two hours of skiing burns 984 calories—more than a six-mile run."

In no time you'll melt that excess fat right off. If that doesn't work, try this full-body fat-loss workout. Trust us: you'll have the beach body of your dreams right in the dead of winter.

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Ari Notis
Ari is a senior editor, specializing in news and culture. Read more
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