The cold winter months—or motherhood—often means in order for us to stay healthy, we need to work out how to workout at home.

Researchers in Denmark have discovered an eight per cent increase in Danish people being diagnosed with depression in the month following the end of daylight savings. The author of the study, Soren Ostergaard from Aahus University, said “the transition to standard time is likely to be associated with a negative psychological effect as it very clearly marks the coming of a period of long, dark and cold days”.

Temperatures in Australia And New Zealand may never reach the bitter extremes of Denmark’s winters, yet the effect of the time change remains.

“Because it gets dark sooner in the evening, some people may experience more fatigue on their commute home,” said Dr Raghu Upender, medical director of the Sleep Disorders Center at Vanderbilt University in Nashville (US).

This fatigue has a negative effect on our exercise habits, as people often feel too tired during dark, cold evenings to get out and get moving. Yet, the recommendation of at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day never changes. This means in order for us to stay healthy, we need to work out how to workout at home.

Here are 4 indoor exercise ideas that will keep you fighting fit during the cold, dark winter months.

1. Stretching

It may not make you sweat, but stretching in itself is a very useful exercise. A combination of stretches not only works out your entire body, but also increases your overall mobility and flexibility. Aim to stretch twice a day at least three times a week.

2. Skipping

Skipping is a fast, fat-burning, full-body workout that you can do within the comfort of your own home. All you need is a few bucks (you can get a decent skipping rope for $10) and a little bit of bounce in your legs.

3. Planking

The planking craze is far from crazy. This activity helps improve core, back and neck strength, while also engaging other whole muscle groups (arms, legs). But a word of warning: planking is not the magic bullet solution that some people have come to believe.

4. Exercise with Alisha

The thought of watching videos on your computer or iPad may seem counterproductive to your mission to stay active. However, all you need is 10 minutes to start getting fit with our Exercise with Alisha segments. Many of the exercises require little to no equipment, so you can easily turn your living room into your own personal gym.

Here’s one to help you tone your arms.

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