It all starts with a weather report. The minute you hear that it might snow, you're looking out the window, waiting for the first flakes to fall. The sky grows darker and a certain smell tinges the air. You go to sleep as the snow begins to fall, a ring of cold crystals surrounding the pale moon.
In the morning, you wake up to find the ground blanketed with snow. You don't need an alarm clock; you're up and throwing on your snow gear within minutes. There's just one thought on your mind as you lace up your boots - get to that sledding hill.
Sledding: Perhaps the most popular and easiest winter sports around is sledding. All you need is a hill - large or small - and a way to get down it. Some people use old-fashioned rudder sleds, others a simple plastic disc. Groups of friends and families have fun with toboggans. Some people prefer to sled down long, steep hills, while others are more comfortable on gentle, rolling hills. Whether you're sitting up or lying down on your sled of choice, all you need to do is get to the bottom of the hill!
Exercise: When you get to the bottom of the hill, that's when the real exercise begins. The walk back to the top of the hill can be hard work, but the joy of the downhill ride makes it worth it. Even if the hill isn't very steep, the fact that you're outside breathing the fresh, crisp winter air makes sledding an extremely healthy outdoor activity.
You may not watch sledding on TV or read about it in the newspapers, but that doesn't mean it's not a sport! At the end of the day, you trudge back home, take off your wet boots and put on some dry, warm clothes. Your muscles are sore but healthy, letting you know that the day's activity was not only fun, but also an excellent winter workout.
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