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The Best Winter Date Ideas for Active Couples

Learn a New Sport Together

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Whether you've got serious cabin fever following the #PolarVortex or you're just bored with your current routine, one of the best winter date ideas is learning to play a new sport that will get you working up a sweat. A great example is the world's "fittest" sport of squash, offered at many health clubs (or dedicated facilities like Squash on Fire). Or, hit the ice to try your hand at broomball (like hockey without the skates) or exer-skating (a fitness class meets figure skating hybrid). And, FYI, it's never too late to learn how to ski. "Even if you end up making complete fools of yourself, you'll have some funny memories to keep laughing about," says Maria Sullivan, relationship expert and vice president at Dating.com.

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Practice Restorative Yoga

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Restorative yoga is an amazing way to relax, ease anxiety, and even help you sleep better. When practiced with your partner, it can have some erotic benefits too. Take a class together at a neighborhood studio or at home (here's an easy guide to restorative yoga moves you can do at home). "Practice doing poses that do not involve direct physical touch or verbal communication," says life coach Lauren Zoeller. Help each other get into a posture without using words, then set a three-minute timer to hold the pose and relax.

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Have a Breakfast Date

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Rather than dressing up for a dinner, opt for a morning meal focused on each other (and delicious food and coffee, of course). Plan it the night before so you can both wake up with something to look forward to. Choose a restaurant within a reasonable distance of your home, so you can walk or run there together. If you'd rather cook a healthy breakfast at home, "light a bunch of candles to set the mood, and start the day slow by intentionally connecting with your partner as you make a meal together," says Wade Brill, a lifestyle and mindfulness coach.

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Go Hot Tubbing

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Already own a hot tub? Slipping into the water on a chilly night—bonus points if it's snowing!—can help ease sore muscles and set the ultimate mood for romance (bathing suits optional, as long as it's a private tub). If you don't have one, you can still enjoy the benefits by finding a nearby spa or hotel with a hot tub to relax on a winter day or night, says relationship expert April Masini. A company called Resort Pass lets you purchase a day pass to enjoy access to pools and spas at luxury hotels around the country.

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Channel Your Inner Child

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Remember those days before you were chained to email, worrying about that thing your boss said, balancing plans with friends, trying to squeeze in meditation, and all the other stress that comes with adulting? Regain those simpler times (if only for an afternoon) by giving you and your S.O. permission to play like kids together. Head to a playground in your neighborhood and push each other on swings, recommends Jessi Holden, R.D., who writes the blog Nutrition Brewed about meals for two. Throw it back to junior high by spending a few hours at the skating rink, or visit a trampoline park—Sky Zone has more than 200 locations throughout the U.S. where you can jump, flip, and capture the ultimate Boomerang.

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Take an Adventure Day

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You don't need to spend a lot of money to create an "adventure" together; you can plan one in your own backyard. "Pick a new neighborhood that you've never explored, switching up the sights, sounds, and tastes of your daily routine," says Brill. Or, designate a fun theme for the day, like "bakeries or breweries" or "shopping and sipping," then hit as many spots as you can that fit into those parameters by foot or bike. If you live in a climate with snow, outdoor adventures like snowshoeing or cross-country skiing can provide a simultaneous workout and serious bonding time. Many REI locations rent out gear for both, and golf courses often turn fairways into trails during winter.

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Book a Couples' Massage

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If a weekend workout together is already part of your routine, add excitement by tacking on a massage at the end, says fitness professional Diana Mitrea. You can do this by splurging on a couples' massage at a local day spa or hotel, checking out one of those under-the-radar foot massage parlors, or giving each other massages. (Either way, you'll reap the magical mind-body benefits of getting a massage.)

If you opt for at-home, set the mood by dimming the lights, cueing up a relaxing Spotify playlist, and stocking up on a luxurious massage oil to make the experience feel special. A few tips from SpaFinder on proper technique: Use your body and its weight to add pressure (rather than just your fingers/hands); drop your shoulders; lean in from your core; and relax and have fun. Don't trust your own massage skills? Call an expert from Thumbtack or Soothe for a spa-quality couples' massage at home.

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Plan a Scavenger Hunt

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Companies like Big City and Urban Adventure Quest organize timed, Amazing Race­–like adventures for teams around the country that provide an adrenaline-inducing, active way to get to know your city (and S.O.!) better. These can be a great double-date idea, but if you'd rather DIY, it can be thrilling to plan a scavenger hunt specifically for your partner, say Marty Kupper and Dana Lam, the couple behind Fun Fantasy Ritual relationship coaching. Make a list of items to find, either separately (nothing wrong with a little friendly competition!) or together. End the hunt with a reward, like meeting at a favorite spot for cocktails.

Photo: Maria Savenko / Shutterstock

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