This is Part IV of the “31 Days of Healthy Living” series.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about being a New Englander, it’s that you can’t take yourself (or your fashion) too seriously in January.
(probably December and quite possibly April too)
It was zero degrees this morning.
You heard me right.
I pulled out the most unfashionable things that I could find, just to keep myself warm for this morning’s run. The biggest down jackets. The thickest scarves. Warm, winter running tights. Apparently, all I need are some wool socks. 😉
(This is from last year! No 6.5’s for me lately, although I’d like to work up to that again soon!)
That being said, my motivation isn’t quite the same when winter rolls around.
Sure, I love running through the first snow fall, when the ground is pure white and not a soul would dare venture out except for the few and the brave (at least that’s what I like to tell myself.)
But still. It’s tough. It’s not like summer, when I can just roll out of bed, throw on my sneaks and just run.
I have to lean on other ways to keep me motivated in staying fit.
1. Having an exercise companion.
My dad runs through negative degree temperatures with me, no excuses. I can’t think of anyone else who would do that night after night after night, even during snow storms.
(Which is why it’s so important to find someone who’s as dedicated as you are!)
2. Find more ways to move.
In the summer, the days are longer. Which means I can usually sneak in a morning run and a short walk after dinner.
During the winter? I’m lucky if I get my morning run in! So I try to find new ways to move. Parking far in the parking lot. Shoveling. Yoga. Dancing to the radio while I make dinner. And so on and so forth. Little bouts of activity really do add up!
3. Mix it up.
Some people need to mix up their workouts, or else they risk being bored.
I literally have to force myself to branch out from running and my twice-weekly yoga.
But once I do, I realize what I’ve been missing. It’s a good idea to try something new, whether that means a new gym class, a workout DVD, or snowboarding!
(by the way, snowshoeing may LOOK easy…)
4. Reward yourself with something you love.
When I have the time, I like to end a chilly winter run with a cup of hot tea and 30 minutes of reading under a warm, toasty blanket (post-stretching, of course!)
5. Remind yourself of what it feels like to finish a good workout.
You may have heard this a million and one times, but it’s still very true.
You’ll never regret working out. You’ll almost always regret NOT working out. Unless you’re sick, of course. In which case, listen to your body, rest, and get healthy so that you can head back out there!
QUESTION: How do you stay fit in the winter? Do you find it tougher to stay motivated? Share your tips and secrets on staying fit!