Minnesotans brave cold, take part in outdoor fitness challenge

Minnesotans braved the new year’s wave of freezing temps by kicking off an outdoor fitness challenge on Sunday.

The "Frosty 40" is off to a frozen start.

It’s a winter exercise challenge at the Carpenter Nature Center in Hastings.

“It bothers me, but if I bundle up enough it doesn’t bother me,” Katie Vieth, Frosty 40 participant, said.

Over a dozen people bundled up and put their best foot forward, kicking off the new year by getting active.

“We had decided that we wanted to try to get out and be more active in the winter,” Lori James, participant, said.

The "Frosty 40" is a race to get to 40 miles in 40 days. Participants can walk, run, cross country ski or snowshoe to reach the milestone within the next few months.

“I wasn’t sure how many people would come, but it’s great to see that it’s a good attendance for considering how cold it is,” Mayme Johnson, Frosty 40 participant, said.

So far, about 53 people are signed up for the winter challenge. Johnson is hoping to beat last year’s record, which was over 150.

“We’re hearty Minnesotans. I think these people signed up for the Frosty 40 just to get in their miles this winter and so I’m thrilled that so many people showed up,” Johnson said.

Some said it’s a part of being a Minnesotan — keeping a positive attitude in negative-degree weather.

“Embracing the winter, instead of staying in the house and being all bundled up. Embracing the winter so that you could enjoy nature,” James said.

There’s still time to sign up for the Frosty Forty.

Applications are open until Feb. 1 and the challenge ends on March 20.