How to Stay Motivated in the Winter
As the warm weather begins to fade away, the leaves begin to change, and the winter clothes are unpacked from their storage boxes. The cold weather brings feelings of coziness and cuddling, inspiring you to stay in and throw on a movie and relax. The winter months are notorious for encouraging the consumption of foods packed with sugar and carbs, and with snow on the ground, it can be hard to find the motivation to leave the house and burn some of those excess calories off.
If you’re looking for a way to stay motivated, active, and fit in the face of Halloween candy bags stalking you in the grocery store, Thanksgiving recipes already taking up room in your cookbooks, and commercials for Christmas-time sweets and treats already appearing in commercials, then come to WillPower and join our community of motivated and empowering members. It’s the hottest 45 minutes in fitness, and you will always feel accomplished afterwards. Become a member today and get fit now.
GET RID OF EXCUSES LIKE “IT’S TOO COLD AND DARK TO GET OUT OF BED”
Yes, while it is true that temperature and light have an impact on our body rhythms during the winter, repeating this excuse to ourselves ultimately prevents us from stepping outside our comfort zone, and, if you haven’t heard, change doesn’t occur inside your comfort zone. Of course, getting out of bed and leaving your house before the sun is up is uncomfortable, unideal even. It is, however, necessary if you have to work all day and need to take care of the kids when you get home. If you tell yourself this truth, that it is too cold and too dark and too uncomfortable, you are manifesting a truth that working out and becoming fit is supposed to be comfortable and easy. Ask anyone who looks like what you want to look like how they got to where they are. Their answer will most likely include the fact that they had to overcome these internal challenges and change the false realities that they built for themselves.
DRESS THE PART
Stepping outside and feeling cold can kill your motivation, but only if you don’t have the right clothes to protect yourself with. There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing choices. Upgrading to proper winter performance gear will keep your muscles warm and keep you comfortable as your car heats up and you make your way to the gym. If you’re heading outdoors, then be prepared with a kit of thermal leggings, gloves, and headbands. It is absolutely worth treating yourself and investing in some quality gear. The quality, enjoyment, and comfort that you get from them easily counteract the cold and the suffering that you go through with cheap clothes and gear. Even if you’re not working out outside, investing in some new gym clothes will help with your motivation. You’ll want to show off those new shoes or new gear!
On those days when it is just too cold to leave your house, or the snow has trapped you in your home, there’s no reason not to put on your favorite workout gear and… stay indoors! There is no shortage of indoor workout routines and YouTube videos that you can conquer in your own living room. No gym membership is needed. You may have to improvise and substitute hand weights for some books or bags of flour, but you can always just use your own body weight. While you should push yourself just as hard as if you weren’t working out at home, you can crawl back under blankets as sheets faster after you finish your workout.
GET A FRIEND TO WORK OUT WITH YOU
Finding someone to work out with will make you more accountable because just the simple act of making that commitment with someone will make you stay true to your word and get to the gym. Simply knowing that someone is also finding the motivation to get to the gym despite the cold will lighten the burden of having to leave your home. Beyond that, however, finding someone to work out with will motivate you and even make working out more enjoyable. It can be a social time for the both of you and you’ll be able to push each other and remind each other why it’s worth it to continue on your path towards your goal.
CHANGE UP YOUR ROUTINE
The change in weather may leave you feeling uninspired by your previous workout routine, so you may benefit by changing it up. Try something new and change up your workout plan — there are thousands of ways to stay active! Sign up for a membership package at a yoga studio, look into personal training sessions at the gym, try swimming lessons, or look into group fitness classes. WillPower believes that there is strength in numbers and uses group fitness classes to provide support, motivation, and accountability. The high-energy strength training will help you push through your winter doldrums, making you feel strong and accomplished, ready to come back.
REMIND YOURSELF WHY IT’S IMPORTANT
Many people use the change in weather as an excuse to cover up in bulky clothing and hibernate in their homes. In those moments where you are forcing yourself to change out of your comfortable clothes, it can be hard to keep in mind how great you will feel after you finish working out. Pushing yourself to exercise on these cold and dark days will boost your body’s production of endorphins, making you feel good and helping to keep those winter blues away. Exercising boosts your body’s serotonin, norepinephrine, and stress response, so you will maintain a state of calm as you approach the stress of the holidays.
Further, it is important to remember that you won’t be able to reach your fitness goals if every day is spent on the couch in front of the television as the temperature drops. When you feel like all hope is lost, remember how good you felt when you got up and got to the gym. Remember the energy you had, the improved sleep you got, and how you would always look at yourself after crushing a workout. Remember why you worked so hard in the first place and realize that it is helping you reach a healthier, happier you.
BE KIND TO YOURSELF AND YOUR BODY
When you get back from a workout, leave yourself enough time to unwind and relax. Make yourself a cup of hot chocolate (you deserve it) or enjoy a nice warm shower. Sooth your muscles and your mind and reward yourself for getting a workout done. If you weren’t able to make it to the gym or weren’t able to complete an at-home workout, don’t beat yourself up. Continue to love yourself and feed yourself good food. Punishing yourself won’t solve anything, and ultimately, punishment is not as great a motivator as self-love is.