As the winter days get darker and colder, the motivation to maintain your workout routine and healthy eating plan can start to freeze too. Suddenly, staying in bed underneath your warm and comfy covers is more appealing than that distant beach vacation that once spurred morning cardio and weight lifting sessions. Working out during the winter months is just plain hard, and with the holidays, exercising and eating healthy can be low—really low—on the priority list. Opening up your curtains to see a swirling blizzard is not exactly an inspiring vision for stimulating your healthy-living strategy. Beating the winter workout blues takes grit, determination, and a little dose of hope, but take heart! The following tips should help you break out the tennis shoes even when the frigid temperatures threaten.
Choose your workout clothes the night before, include a jacket or sweatshirt, and have that gym bag already packed. Ignoring your alarm clock is easy when the bed is oh-so-warm, and dressing for a workout is oh-so cold. Leave out or pack some sweats so you can immediately cover up your (increasing lean and muscular) arms and legs. There can then be NO excuse to avoid jumping out of bed and into spin class, or leaving work to hit the weights.
Train for a race during the winter. Setting a challenging goal can keep you going even when Mother Nature is working against you. Running your first half marathon or entering your local gym’s incentive competitions are not silly ambitions! If you really want to retaliate against winter, consider training for a spring full-marathon. The training schedule or group gym classes may be the only thing to get you out of bed when Jack Frost has visited overnight.
Use online workout videos at home. Making space in your home to work out is a great way to avoid having to brush the snow off the car to brave the icy roads. Buy some basic workout equipment, like resistance bands and tubing, small hand weights, and a mat. Planning a specific shopping trip to choose some equipment can be fun and motivating, as well as using a calendar to plan out, ahead of time, a variety of workouts for the week.
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