In winter, the cooler temperatures and shorter days often mean it’s hard to stay motivated and stick to your workout routine. A lack of immediate fitness goals (aka, no pressing reason to put on a bikini) can put a freeze on your motivation.
Exercise is integral in the winter: it has the power to help improve mood and boost energy levels at this low-sunlight time of year!
But winter doesn’t need to be an exercise spoiler.
Follow these tips to stay motivated, fit and most importantly, warm, this winter.
1) Have the right kit
If you are heading outdoors then it’s a must to invest in some good quality winter activewear. Thermal leggings, gloves, headbands – the lot! It makes outdoor training much more comfortable and
reduces the risk of catching a chill.
2) Swap outdoor for indoor
If training outdoors is your thing, there’s an exercise equivalent indoors. A lot of the newer machinery can replicate outdoor training.
Runners, cyclists and rowers have machines that allow them to do interval training indoors. You could also trade Boot Camp for circuit-style workouts within a club. Or if the gym isn’t an option, try body weights at home with the help of apps.
3) Try warmer workouts
When your body is craving warmth, give it what it wants in a way that is enjoyable and helps keep you fit. By introducing exercises like hot yoga, changing your outdoor swimming to swimming in a heated indoor pool or adding a sauna session into your exercise routine, you’re going to want to go to training and you know you’re going to feel warm and good afterwards.
4) Plan ahead
It’s always good to have a plan to help you avoid the urge to skip training when motivation fades.
Packing your workout bag the night before is a great way to plan ahead and removes another excuse. Another way is to book yourself into a class ahead of time, so you feel obliged to go and can mentally prepare yourself. You’ll know what you’re going to do in your training session the next day and aren’t just showing up to train without a plan.
5) Keep a journal
Remember how awesome you felt after boot camp? How all of your stress melted away after three miles? Keep a personal log of it in a notebook immediately after your workout. Flip through the book to remind yourself why you should get to the gym.
6) Post on social media
Telling your followers and friends you’re going to exercise keeps you accountable in a very public way. Experts tell us that support from family and friends is key to maintaining an exercise regime.
7) Snag some new workout gear
Combat the cold — and give yourself a confidence boost — with some new gear, from some trainers and warm lycra layers to a high-tech running watch. You’re not going to sit around staring at your new swag — you’re going to want to break it in. There’s definitely
something about new swag makes getting out the door and hitting the gym a lot easier!
8) Make a spring fitness goal
Spend your winter training for your first half marathon or sprint triathlon. Whatever your fitness goal, sometimes an impending deadline is just the motivation you need to get going.
9) Invest in home gym equipment
If you really can’t bear the cold, have some simple workout gear available at home. There are hundreds of app workouts, as well as free workouts on YouTube for all fitness levels. An exercise mat and some weights may be all you need to get started!
10) Treat yourself
Did you conquer the cold? Go ahead and treat yourself. Why not bring a big thermos filled with a warm drink to your workout. Bring enough to share, and you’ll be the most popular person in your run club during cool-down.