Now past the holidays, New Year's and the Super Bowl, we are staring down the barrel of gray February and temperamental March.
But don't think about that. Think instead about avoiding those winter blues.
"Exercise does elevate your endorphins, which can give you an uplifted sense of self in the winter," said Amy Bartling, a licensed athletic trainer with Northern Michigan Sports Medicine Center.
Exercise doesn't have to be just hitting the treadmill. Workouts can be wrapped in pretty packages, too.
Cross country skiing
"Cross country skiing is wonderful and a great way to get outdoors," said Bartling.
Though skiing requires some equipment, an afternoon of gliding through the woods does not have to break the bank.
Bahnhof Sports of Petoskey rents skis by the day: a 24-hour rental will set you back $20. For budget-friendly equipment to purchase, try local shops such as Challenge Mountain Resale Shop in Boyne City.
Some top trail choices in the area include Young State Park near Boyne City. Wilderness State Park in Carp Lake offers 26 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and many trails that wind through its 10,000 acres.
Andy Stewart of Bahnhof Sports in Petoskey recommends groomed trails that operate on a donation system, like Good Hart Farms nature preserve north of Harbor Springs and Wildwood Hills Pathways near Indian River.
For a long list of other notable ski trails, visit www.michigan.org and search "cross country skiing."
An old standby, snowshoeing is a low-impact sport with a fairly cheap entree -- have snowshoe, can snowshoe. "Snowshoeing is a nice thing to do that doesn't take a lot of equipment or skill to learn," said Bartling.
Another bonus: snowshoers are not limited to trails found in state parks.
"You can go in places where you might not be able to go with cross country skiing," said Bartling. "You can blaze your own trail."
Using ski poles while snowshoeing can also give you more of an upper body and cardio workout, said Bartling.
For a social outing, Camp Daggett on Walloon Lake is offering a free torchlight snowshoe event from 5-9 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 26.
For four years now, Nature's Kennel Sled Dog Racing & Adventures, based in McMillan, has teamed up with Boyne at Boyne Highlands to offer dogsled rides.