All posts by Jeff Fidler

low carb appetizers for holidays

Low Carb Hors D’oeuvres & Appetizers for the Holidays

Low Carb Fun & Fancy Holiday Party Appetizers & Hors D’oeuvres

The holiday party season is quickly approaching, and this year we encourage you to surprise your guests with a new selection of appetizers and hors d’oeuvres that will delight them with exciting flavours and vibrant colours. In this list, you’ll discover an interesting variety of delicious low carb recipes that your family and friends are sure to love.

Putting on a great holiday party doesn’t mean that you need to set your low carb diet off track or put it on hold for the night. In fact, as we’ve talked about before in our previous article about crafting a wonderful low carb Christmas dinner, these recipes are even better than some of the more traditional ones that you all know and love.

Let’s get right to it with a delectable dish that is at the top of the list for amazing low carb appetizers!

Bacon Wrapped Brussels Sprouts

Bacon makes everything better! This creative recipe combines the salty deliciousness of bacon and wraps it around the robust flavour of roasted Brussels sprouts to create some of the yummiest morsels ever to adorn the end of a toothpick. When dipped in the tasty balsamic mayo dip that is included in this recipe, the flavours get even better. You’d better make a big batch of these, because they won’t last long once they hit the table!

Low Carb Christmas Tree Platter

If you’re looking to add some colour to your holiday appetizer table this year, this fun hors d’oeuvres recipe is sure to fit the bill. Bright greens and deep reds abound in this clever creation that tastes just as good as it looks. Low carb cranberry sauce gives a nice sweetness to these rolls, and accentuate the taste of the turkey and cream cheese nicely. Half the fun of this recipe is arranging the stack before you serve it, especially if you top the final result with a cute little cheese star to finish the look.

Keto Charcuterie Board

We just LOVE charcuterie boards, and this recipe is no exception. This combination includes low carb crackers and some crisps made from cheese and almond flour, as well as a diverse selection of flavourful cheeses and delicious meats. Of course, the best part of a charcuterie plate is that you can change it up in any way you want, so feel free to swap out any of the meats, cheeses, or other items for whatever may strike your fancy. Get creative! Charcuterie boards never need to be the same twice.

Christmas Cookie Martini

Ok, so this one is technically not an appetizer or an hors d’oeuvres, but once we found it we just had to include it in this list. Fancy and creative martinis are always a lot of fun to try, and this holiday-themed drink is a great way to put your guests in a festive mood. For larger get-togethers, you can even make this drink in batches and serve in a punch bowl so guests can serve themselves throughout the evening. With one of these in-hand, you’ll definitely be feeling cheery!

Easy Shrimp Cocktail with Creamy Sriracha Cocktail Sauce

Who doesn’t love the delicious taste of a good shrimp cocktail? They’re amazing low carb appetizers, and you can get creative with them by changing up the sauce you use to dip them in. In this particular recipe, the traditional cocktail sauce has been swapped out for a creamy sauce that has a nice spicy zing to it. We love the taste of sriracha hot sauce, so it’s no surprise that this recipe is quickly becoming our favourite way to make a shrimp cocktail.

Yule Log Cake

We just had to close out this list with a modern twist on a festive classic. Also known as a Buche de Noel, the Yule log cake has been a favourite holiday treat for generations. Of course, what’s not to love about moist chocolate cake wrapped up with a creamy and smooth whipped filling? This low carb version makes it so you can still enjoy this traditional holiday dessert without setting your diet off-track. In less than an hour, you can have this gorgeous dessert ready to serve, and finish off your holiday meal in style.

Surprise & Delight Your Friends & Family This Season

When your guests arrive to celebrate the holidays this year, we’re sure that this selection of holiday treats will help you set a cheery mood for your party right from the start.

The holidays are a time to enjoy time with friends and family and enjoy good food and delicious drinks while you reminisce about years past and look forward to those yet to come. Happy holidays to all!

healthy holiday treats low carb

Low Carb Healthy Treats for our 2018 Holiday Season

Fun Low Carb 2018 Recipe Ideas to Enjoy Over the Holidays

Who doesn’t love the holiday season? Whatever faith you celebrate, December is usually a month filled with parties, get-togethers, work events, family and, of course, an endless stream of treats, both sweet and savoury. Ask anyone who works in a gym’s membership department in January, people love to eat holiday treats in December.

Whatever your holiday pleasure—cookies, shortbread, fudge, cake—there’s a low carb option that is worth checking out. By simply swapping out an ingredient or two you can enjoy the same treats you have every December without any of the guilt.

The holidays should be a time to indulge in family and food so let us help. Here are some low carb recipes to make this upcoming holidays memorable and fun!

Traditional Holiday Treats

Every person or family has their traditions but holiday treats are typically broken down into two categories: sweet and savoury. On the sweet side, there’s fruit cakes that seem to be gifted (and re-gifted) plus more popular items like shortbread cookies, sugar cookies, fudge, gingerbread items, crumbles, and bread pudding.

The tradition of the holidays also includes carbs in the form of breads or wheat. That doesn’t have to be the case. Traditions can stay intact even if they have a slightly healthy twist.

Sweet Holiday Treats

December is chock-full of decadent sweet treats. It helps us get through the harsh weather and busy schedules. In addition, it brings us together with friends and family to relax and connect. Here are some of our favourites and the recipes to make them so that they are low carb.

Fudge

Who doesn’t love homemade fudge? Homemade fudge is one of the best things you can bite into during the holidays. It’s a rich blank canvass that you can add your favourite flavours to like nuts, caramel, salt, mint or strawberries. Here is a wonderful recipe for chocolate walnut fudge that will satisfy the loudest sweet tooth. One of its tricks is to use sweetened condensed milk to mimic fudge’s consistency along with vanilla stevia drops and low carb sweetener.

Sugar Cookies 

There is nothing more Christmas than decorated sugar cookies. They are a stable but that doesn’t mean they must be high in carbs to be delicious. Celebrate the holidays and turn your work colleagues into friends with this low carb sugar cookie recipe. By replacing flour with almond flour and using vanilla extract and sweetener in lieu of sugar, you maintain the sugar cookie taste that everyone loves while kicking carbs to the curb.

Shortbread

Shortbread is up there with big pine trees and stockings when it comes to all things Christmas. This crispy and crumbly cookie made with butter, flour and sugar makes a great gift or a wonderful treat to put out for guests.

Looking for a low carb and gluten-free sugar cookie recipe? Try this one out.  It is a true guilt-free crowd-pleaser.   

Brownies

If you don’t RSVP in time to the holiday potluck you might have to scramble for something to make besides sugar cookies or fruit cake. Brownies are always a hit and can be easily made festive by garnishing with red and green sprinkles for Christmas or blue and white for Hanukkah.

We love this recipe, and if you plan on using a baking mix try one from Diabetic Kitchen as the base for your holiday brownies.

Fruit Cake 

Fruit cake gets a bad rap but it wouldn’t be the holidays without it. It’s a wonderful winter cake and with the right ingredients it can be an absolute delight. Make it with your favourite dried fruits like cranberries, cherries, raisins, apricots and peaches.

Give this recipe a try and see how a holiday classic can be remade in a modern and healthy way.

Bread Pudding

A popular English treat, bread pudding is bread, milk, eggs, dried fruit, sugar and spices baked together. You can add whatever nuts and dried fruit you wish. Now, it might be hard to think that something comprised mainly of bread could be low carb but it’s true. With some simple adjustments to the type of sweetener or choice of bread, you can enjoy bread pudding without cheating on your diet. Learn more and give it a go with this recipe.

These treats might be low in carbs but they could still contain a lot of fat. Be mindful of your portions as to not undermine their healthy benefits or your diet.

Savoury Holiday Treats

Monkey Bread

For those unfamiliar with monkey bread, it’s a really fun dish that lets you empty out your fridge and pantry. The fact you can add any flavour makes it perfect for the holidays. Get creative and portion your monkey bread to feature different flavours, include ginger, lemon, poppy seed, cheese, chive to name a few.

It doesn’t take a lot of time and if you have an artistic eye, you can make it the centerpiece of the dinner table. Choose a bread or buns and toppings that are low in carbs.

Veggie Trays

Call us cheesy but we love taking a run-of-the-mill veggie tray and sprucing it up for the holidays. To make it fit for the holidays, choose vegetables that are red and green and arrange using vegetables of other colours to spell out a holiday greeting.

Check out one of our favourite examples of a veggie tray done right for the holidays.

Deviled Eggs

This Russian delicacy and common party appetizer can be transformed into a fun holiday treat.  A deviled egg is a hard-boiled egg, cut in half, hollowed out and filled with a mixture of yolks, mayonnaise and mustard and topped with cayenne pepper.

All you must do is follow this recipe but with one additional step. Soak half the hard-boiled eggs in a bowl filled with water with red food colouring, and the other half in a bowl filled with water and green food colouring. The result will be a classic treat with a holiday twist and perfect for any party or family meal.

Latkes

For those celebrating Hanukkah or for those attending Hanukah parties, here are some latke ideas that are low carb and absolutely delicious. Since a latke is essentially the same as a fritter, you can replace potato as the main ingredient with zucchini, squash or cauliflower. Both take on the onion and garlic flavour and make the dish more carb friendly.

Latkes are an oily and salty treat that works as an appetizer, side dish or even a main course for the most ardent fans.

Enjoy the Holidays with Amazing Low Carb Treats!

The holidays only come around once a year so enjoy it. It’s a time for food, family, fun and a great time to relax. You can even enjoy without the guilt with these easy low carb recipes, which everyone will love. You don’t even have to mention that they’re low carbs, most won’t be able to taste the difference.  And you might want to have a look at our low carb appetizer ideas for even more inspiration!

The Low Carb Grocery is here to help you get the ingredients you need to make the holidays happen. Be sure to browse our selection of products and brands to find an array of options that are sure to please.

Remember, the best way to end your year is by indulging in your favourite foods surrounded by your favourite people. The best way to start the year is by not having to spend extra time in the gym.

Save on your low carb holiday shopping with this great offer!

$15 off sub-total $100.00* + Free Shipping! —  Just enter this code during checkout: ALZDTC

  • Minimum purchase of $100.00 required.
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keto compliant cocktails and beverages

Guide to Keto Cocktails & Beverages

5 Delicious Keto-Friendly Cocktails & Beverages

Are you in the mood to sip on something new? Well, if you’re on the keto diet you’re going to need to be careful about what you choose to fill your glass with if you’re going to keep your diet on track. Fortunately, there are many different styles of drink that you can try that fit perfectly with the keto diet.

We have gathered together a list of 5 interesting and very flavourful beverages, cocktails, and drinks that keto dieters are sure to love. Whether you’re curious to try a fancy new sipper at your next dinner party, or are simply looking for a warm beverage to relax with on a lazy Sunday afternoon, we’ve got you covered.

Is Alcohol OK on the Keto Diet?

First, we must discuss the elephant in the room: alcohol on the keto diet. While we’ve only selected a couple of alcoholic creations for this list, it is a topic of some controversy among many keto dieters. In general, the consensus is that alcohol should be avoided while living the keto lifestyle, however this is more directly related to certain types of alcoholic beverages and what they’re made of.

Alcoholic drinks that contain sugar, carbs, and other ingredients that can kick you out of ketosis are to be avoided entirely. This includes drinks like beer, wine, coolers, and mixed drinks that contain those types of ingredients. Sugars in particular, and even some sugar substitutes, are not ok for keto dieters.

For more info on what sweeteners work with the keto diet, check out our Keto Diet Guide to Artificial Sweeteners.

This isn’t to say that alcohol is 100% off limits for keto dieters, however. Spirits, such as vodka, tequila and gin do not contain those elements, and when used carefully and in moderation can be acceptable as part of the keto diet. Moderation being the key word here, since keto dieters often find the effects of alcohol to be more pronounced. This means you may feel drunk faster, and as such you should be keenly aware of this.

In addition, it should be noted that alcohol has the effect of stalling fat burning, since the liver will stop processing fats and switch to process alcohol first as long as it’s present in the blood. This cessation of fat burning is only temporary, and things will switch back when the alcohol has been depleted.

When it comes right down to it, you can always simply choose to forgo the alcohol and simply make virgin versions that taste just as good. Remember that the choice is yours to make, and these recipes are all easy enough to customize in any way that you want to suit your preferences.

Now, let’s take a look at some of the delicious keto-friendly beverages we’ve discovered, starting with an amazing coffee recipe that you will definitely love!

Bulletproof Coffee

This unbelievable coffee recipe is the perfect way for keto dieters to start their day. It’s a great combination of caffeine and healthy fats that gets you fired up and keeps the energy levels high throughout the day. In this recipe, you’ll combine your favourite brewed coffee with grass-fed butter and MCT (medium-chain triglyceride) powder, along with a pinch of cinnamon, and the results are outstanding! You can also customize this coffee recipe with other add-ins such as Himalayan salt, Maca powder, or Stevia.

Keto Bloody Mary

We love the robust flavours and garnishes of a Bloody Mary, and now that we’ve discovered this fantastic keto-friendly recipe, we love them even more! Ramp the spice up if you like things hot, or dial it down if you prefer a subtler heat. Choose from a wide range of garnishes, including celery, olives, or even shrimp for a bit of extra protein while you sip. Whether as a pre-dinner beverage or to sip on a lazy morning, you can be sure that you’ll love the taste of this cocktail which is just as good with or without alcohol.

Coconut Milk Latte

Here’s another awesome twist on your morning coffee that you’ve just got to try! The flavour of coconut combined with the bold taste of coffee works incredibly well, and the thickness of the full-fat coconut milk adds a smooth and creamy texture to this drink. If you’re a fan of lattes with a little hint of sweetness and light flavours, this concoction is sure to be a regular addition to your coffee routine.

Keto Vodka Mojito

When it comes to trendy cocktails, mojitos are all the rage right now. They’re a light and refreshing drink, perfect for a sunny patio or an evening of cocktails with friends. This recipe changes things up by swapping out the traditional rum for vodka, giving the drink a taste that is more akin to a minty martini. Again, just like the Bloody Mary recipe earlier in this list, you can easily make this mojito virgin and skip the vodka but still keep the wonderful flavours. Yum!

Zingy Salted Lime Soda

Speaking of refreshing drinks, this thirst-quenching beverage is incredibly simple to make but definitely does a great job of cooling you off. With just three ingredients, you can make a pitcher of delicious drinks to sip on that goes perfectly with a casual afternoon of appetizers and hors d’oeuvres. Customize the taste of this drink by choosing from club soda, seltzer water, or your favourite sparkling mineral water and make it your own. Each will have a distinct taste profile that will be different when combined with the tartness of the lime and accentuate the flavour of the salt.

We’d Like to Propose a Toast to the Keto Diet

As you can see, there are plenty of different ways to enjoy interesting and unusual drinks while on the keto diet. Making a great drink doesn’t have to be overly complicated just because you’re following keto rules, and sometimes all it takes is a little creativity and some clever substitutions.

We hope that you will enjoy this list of keto-friendly drinks, and we raise our glasses to toast to your healthy lifestyle. Cheers!

And be sure to check out some of our other keto related content, including:

casserole recipes low carb

Healthy Low Carb Casserole Recipes

Low Carb Casserole Recipes, Perfect for Winter

For centuries, people have been enjoying casseroles. It’s easy to understand the reasons why this dish has maintained its popularity for so long. A casserole is a simple meal that bursts with flavour, and it is versatile enough to fit multiple times into any weekly meal plan.

A casserole is essentially a stew or a pasta that is baked in a deep pan. The name itself is derived from the cookware it is traditionally served in, a casserole dish.

Casseroles are a meal where you can empty your fridge and pantry and use cheese as a binder so that it all comes together in a gooey, salty and delicious meal. Because of this, they are sometimes viewed as boring dishes that are high in carbs and fat. The reality is that they are far from boring and the cook controls the nutrition level.

The thing with casseroles is that they are the perfect winter meal. It’s a hot meal in the dead of winter that’s inexpensive, let’s you use whatever is available in your kitchen and creates leftovers. The options are endless and there is a wealth of low carb recipes that will make sure you are ready for bathing suit season once winter thaws and summer arrives.

We’re excited to share some of our favourite low carb casserole dishes that will help you survive the winter.

The Enduring Casserole

There’s no such thing as a typical casserole. You can build the dish around any protein or pasta type. You can use any herbs or spices, either dry or fresh. There’s a reason that the casserole has planted its flag in the homes of millions of people around the world when it’s time for dinner: it’s hearty, flavourful and easy to make.

Its illustrious legacy has withstood a plethora of modern culinary advances. No matter how much you enjoy using your sous vide machine, nothing will replace the practicality and comfort of a perfectly baked casserole. Because the cook has complete control over ingredients, casseroles can be a great option for those looking to decrease carbs in their diet.

Let’s dig into some amazing recipes that you can treat your family to this winter.

Creamy Corn Casserole

This unique casserole is full of the natural sweetness of corn, which gives it a heartiness despite the lack of carbs. Fans of both Mexican and Mediterranean food will love the flavour of this recipe as it is made with jalapeno, adobo spice, bell peppers, queso fresco, Greek yogurt and fresh herbs. With a few simple adjustments, you can make the dish entirely Mexican or completely Greek. It’s whatever you are in the mood for that evening.

Add chicken and your favourite low carb vegetables to round out this casserole that your friends and family will love.

Cheesy Low Carb Taco Casserole 

Sticking with the flavours of Mexico for another moment, you will definitely want to try this taco casserole recipe that’s cheesy, scrumptious and filled with rich ground meat and tomatoes. The secret ingredient for this low carb delight is cauliflower rice. You can buy this product pre-chopped, but if not, just chop up a head of cauliflower as finely as possible or use a food processor.

Breakfast Casserole

Why not add a casserole to the mix of low carb breakfast options? This ham and cheese casserole is best with parmesan and cheddar and you can keep the carbs in check by using a shredded celery root base instead of potatoes. A good tip is to use cubed ham as opposed to sliced because it will hold up better during baking.

Of course, if there’s a cheese you like more than cheddar then go for it. Both gruyere or havarti are rich and creamy substitutes.

Ground Beef Stroganoff Casserole

Why not put a Russian spin on the classic casserole? This recipe is keto-friendly, gluten-free and low carb making it the perfect winter meal for health-conscious people cooking for their family or on a budget.

Beef stroganoff is always a winning dish and this ground beef casserole version will remind you of those traditional Eastern European flavours. The sour cream based sauce separates it from other casserole dishes and you can substitute ground beef for chicken or turkey to make it more nutritious. Related: check out some great low carb beef stew recipes.

Chicken and Asparagus Bake with Creamy Cheesy Curry Sauce

This recipe might sound like a departure from most casseroles you’ve made or eaten in the past but it’s delicious and still easy to make. By adding a touch of curry powder, you can give this chicken and asparagus casserole an exotic bent that makes it unique. The creamy sauce bakes well and since curry is a warming spice this casserole keeps well and makes for wonderful leftovers. If you want to get even more original, you can swap out the asparagus for artichokes, giving it a fun Mediterranean vibe.

And, of course, it’s low carb so you can enjoy it without the guilt.

Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole

The low carb diet has been such a rousing success not just because it’s effective but because you can still indulge in some of your favourite foods. This casserole is proof that low carb does not mean low flavour.

Take the beloved flavours and ingredients of a bacon cheeseburger and stuff them into a baking dish to make a casserole you are sure to love. This kid-friendly recipe uses ground beef, garlic, onion powder, bacon, grated cheese and tomato paste to recreate the quintessential diner bacon cheeseburger.

Chicken Florentine

Lovers of chicken florentine will appreciate this casserole recipe. Chicken florentine is a dish where a piece of chicken (usually a breast) rests on a bed of spinach covered in a cream-based white sauce. This casserole lets you make a perfect chicken florentine without a lot of the hassle. You can even use frozen spinach and mayonnaise. If you find yourself with a little more time you can make an aioli from scratch using only eggs and oil.

Either way, it’s a decadent casserole that will appease even the most fervent fans of this classic Italian dish.

Deconstructed Pizza Casserole

If you are looking for another kid-friendly casserole to go along with the bacon cheeseburger recipe, then try this one out—it’s a great way to incorporate pizza into your low carb diet. Using the word “deconstructed” might make it sound fancy but this recipe really just calls for you to throw your favourite pizza toppings into a casserole dish and then to bake and enjoy.

We recommend using a mix of meat and veggies for both nutrients and a more authentic pizza taste. Our favourite combination is pepperoni, mushrooms, green peppers and green olives for a bit of saltiness to offset the cheese. Also, don’t forget to include oregano to capture that classic Italian Pizza taste.

Designed for Cold and Harsh Winters  

Just because it’s the winter doesn’t mean you must hibernate or suffer through cabin fever on an empty stomach. These recipes will help you feed your family without a lot of stress. They are the ultimate comfort food and will help you survive the seemingly endless winter.

With casseroles, the only limit is your own imagination. If you keep the carb intake in mind, you can get as creative as you want. You can even throw the recipe book away and concoct your own casserole using the flavours you love.

Browse our “shelves” of products and brands to find the best low carb ingredients for your next casserole.

indoor fitness classes for winter

Indoor Fitness Activities to Try This Winter

Unusual and Exciting Indoor Fitness Classes

It’s that time of year when the weather is just not as hospitable as it used to be, and we spend more and more of our time indoors, just trying to keep warm. Unfortunately, for many of us this also means that it can be harder to stick to a regular fitness routine, and it’s not hard to see why.

The appeal of a treadmill on a frosty winter morning is not nearly as strong as fresh, warm air and plenty of sunshine on your local running trails. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t find some awesome fitness classes that give you a great workout and offer tons of fun at the same time. In fact, we’ve gathered together a fantastic list of exciting and unusual fitness classes that all take place indoors and are sure to shake up your healthy lifestyle.

And be sure to check out all the great health food we offer here at The Low Carb Grocery Store – we also have locations across Canada, if you prefer to come shop instore.

Mermaid Swimming Lessons

We’re betting you’ve probably seen this on TV or on social media by now, but this has definitely got to be the coolest way to hit the pool and stay fit! After donning your very own mermaid fin, you’ll be ready to dive in to the pool with an instructor and learn how to swim like a real mermaid. Kids and adults alike will have a blast in this class! There are many different places you can try this, like AquaMermaid that offers classes in many locations across Canada.

Parkour Classes

This is another cool fitness trend that has made the rounds all over social media, and it’s definitely impressive to watch. Parkour is quite simply an athletic and acrobatic method of getting from point A to point B in the fastest way possible. This means going over, under, and around all kinds of obstacles and being very creative in how you do it. Originally developed from various types of obstacle course training and free-running, parkour has become very popular and is a great way to get an intense workout. There are many local organizations that promote parkour, such as PKTO.ca, and many facilities such as The Monkey Vault are opening up to cater to this unique sport.

Trampoline

Who doesn’t love to bounce on a trampoline? Well, you may not know that it’s also a great workout for your entire body and makes for a perfect indoor activity to engage in when the weather is lousy. There are trampoline facilities all over Canada, such as JustBounce in Toronto, that offer classes for jumpers of all ages. This is one activity that’s really easy to learn and get started with and can also be as challenging as you want it to be.

Dodgeball

Relive the fun and laughs of high school gym class by taking up dodgeball this winter! This entertaining sport is physically demanding, competitive, and a lot more strategic than most people would expect. You can be sure that your brain will get a workout keeping track of your team and theirs at the same time that you’re running all over the place trying to stay alive in the game. You can find dodgeball games suitable for all ages at most community centers and fitness centers across the country. Get ready to move fast when you sign up for this class!

CrossFit

When it comes to strength and conditioning programs, few are as well-known worldwide as CrossFit. This unique approach to fitness training combines a wide range of intense movements and activities. CrossFit exercises often include many variations involving equipment and apparatus of unusual styles, such as thick, heavy ropes, giant tires, large kettlebells, resistance bands, and more. The philosophy behind the CrossFit approach is to improve strength, stamina, flexibility, power, speed, coordination, agility, balance, endurance, and accuracy through a varied and intense set of physical activities. One thing is for sure, your body will definitely feel the burn with CrossFit.

Indoor Surfing

Who needs waves to surf? This class proves that you can keep your surfing legs in shape all year round even when the beach is frozen solid. It’s a unique approach to fitness that will undoubtedly have you hooked once you give it a shot. The movements involved in the workouts like those developed by SurfSet Fitness are sure to provide a great challenge, but don’t think that this is only for the pros. You can find classes suitable for all ability levels, so even if you’ve never surfed before you will definitely have fun!

Stay Hydrated & Replenish Fluids

Of course, no matter what physical activity you engage in, you’re going to want to make sure that you stay hydrated. While water is always the standard, many people prefer to have a flavourful sports drink to enjoy during or after their workout. Unfortunately, many of the off-the-shelf sports drinks are loaded with sugars, making them a bad idea for low carb dieters. Luckily for you, we put together a helpful guide to making your own low carb sports drinks. You’ll be surprised how easy it is!

Challenge Yourself and Try Something New

If you’re finding it hard to stay motivated with your fitness during the colder months of the year, classes like these could be exactly what you need to get you fired up and ready to work up a sweat this year. We challenge you to choose something new and unusual to try and get out of your comfort zone in favour of an exciting experience that will also help you live a healthier life. Call up your workout buddy and book a fun new indoor fitness class today, and we’re sure you won’t regret it!

fall and winter running guide

Stay Fit with Fall & Winter Running Tips

Stick to Your Running Routine All Year-Round – Cold Weather Running Tips

So, you’ve had a great summer of running with lots of miles on your shoes, but you’re sad that it has to stop now that the cold weather has arrived? Well, you can cheer up because you don’t need to have a long, dreary winter filled with treadmills and gym walls. Instead, why not try cold-weather running this year and stay outdoors in the fresh air?

Cold weather running is becoming increasingly popular, and it’s really not all that complicated. All it takes is a little preparation, some different gear, and some adjustments to your techniques and you’ll be ready to hit the ground running when the temperatures drop. In this article, we’ve gathered up all the tips and advice that you need to get started with cold weather running and have a great time doing it.

Let’s get started!

How is running in cold weather different?

Before you venture out in to a chilly morning for a run, you need to realize that there are some differences you must consider. Running in colder temperatures has effects on your body that are notably different than running in warmer weather. Specifically, there are risks associated with frostnip, frostbite, and even hypothermia for runners who do not prepare adequately for the weather.

In addition, many people mistakenly believe that they don’t need to hydrate as much when the weather gets cold since they don’t sweat as much. However, your body still uses a lot of water when exercising, so staying hydrated is just as important when running in cold weather.

Often, new cold weather runners experience some discomfort in their lungs during the first few runs as they adjust to the cold air intake, but this will subside after a few experiences and the body adapts. This can be alleviated somewhat by wearing a facemask while you run, which helps to warm the air slightly before it enters the lungs.

Cold weather runners are also more susceptible to cramping or pulled muscles, so it’s generally recommended that the intensity of your run be reduced when the temperatures drop to avoid these risks. It’s best to keep your high-intensity speed work to indoor environments when it gets really cold.

While you won’t have nearly as much exposed skin when running in the colder months of the year, don’t ignore the need for sunscreen on your face and lips. Even though the temperature is low, UV rays have the same effects on your skin and you should take the necessary steps with SPF sunscreen and lip balm to protect yourself.

Gear up for cold weather running.

First and foremost, the most important piece of gear for any runner is a good pair of shoes. Many people will simply use the same shoes in the cold weather that they do in the warm weather, but you may want to invest in a new pair for the colder weather that are designed specifically for the changing conditions. Most styles of winter running shoes offer more insulation and waterproof materials so you stay dry and warm, while others even go so far as to add studs to the soles for extra grip and traction on ice and slippery surfaces.

Socks are critical for cold weather runners, and you’re going to want to invest in a good quality pair of technical socks to wear when you run. These types of socks will be a bit thicker than your normal running socks, so be sure that your shoes will have enough room to accommodate them without becoming uncomfortable. You may even want to add a sock liner on the coldest days that will help wick more moisture away and keep your feet drier and warmer.

When it comes to apparel for winter running, you’ll want to skip the parka and snow pants. The bulk and weight of this type of gear is just not suitable for the needs of a runner. Instead, you’ll want to dress in thinner layers that are made from materials that will wick moisture away from your body to help keep you dry. You will likely find that you need fewer layers than you expect, but it’s always best to start out with more than you need and adjust as you learn what works best for different conditions, rather than risk having not enough protection.

The thinner layers will offer greater comfort and mobility, while providing sequential insulation to help keep you warmer than one thick layer would. In addition, you can adjust the layers based on what the weather is like at any given time. Some options you’ll want to have available include waterproof or windproof outer shells for added protection, and polar fleece mid-layers for greater warmth on the coldest days.

You’ll also want to have an appropriate hat to wear, and some type of protection for your neck and face. Low-profile runners’ hats offer enough warmth to keep you comfortable without cooking up your head and making you sweat. Neckwarmers made from a thin, stretchy material will help protect your exposed skin against the cold and can quickly be pulled up or down to help cover your mouth, cheeks, and nose as needed.

Gloves are also very important in helping protect yourself against the dangers of frostbite, so make sure you’ve got a pair that are comfortable and lightweight to wear when you head out the door.

Be careful and stay safe.

Overall, the biggest thing you need to focus on when running in cold weather is your safety. If it’s -40c and the wind is howling, either stay home or hit the gym. Running when it’s that cold and nasty is just a bad idea.

When getting started with cold weather running, think of it like starting running all over again. The safest approach is to start slow and small and work your way up until you get to a point where you are comfortable with the duration and intensity of the workout, while simultaneously avoiding over-exerting yourself.

Staying safe in cold weather means carrying the same essentials as you do in warm weather. Bring water, low carb high-protein energy bars, and your fully-charged cell phone. Keep in mind that cold weather usually makes batteries drain faster, so having your phone fully charged before you head out is a very wise move. You’ll also want to keep it in a pocket that offers some level of protection and insulation against the cold to avoid the risk of damaging it.

Enjoy the unique experience of cold weather running!

We hope that this article has encouraged you to try cold weather running this year and use it as part of your healthy lifestyle to stay fit and have fun. We’re sure that once you experience the beauty of running through a layer of fluffy, untouched powder snow or through a dark morning filled with gently falling snowflakes, you’ll be hooked. Now get out there, stay safe, and enjoy!

Want to discover other new ways to run? Check out our Beginners Guide to Trail Running and learn more.