When it’s cold, wet and dark, many of us don’t feel like running outside to exercise. New research from Sports Direct shows that 48 percent of us find it difficult to stick to our regular exercise routine during the winter months, while 61 percent stop exercising altogether.
So if you’ve lost your fitness mojo, it’s time to stop wallowing in your hot chocolate and do something about it. Inactivity can take a huge toll on mental health, so don’t let hibernation get the better of you. It’s time to get motivated.
“Being in your pajamas, curled up on the couch, and watching Netflix probably seems more appealing than exercising outside in the cold or hitting the gym,” says Leah Paton, personal trainer at Lanserhof’s private wellness clinic at The Arts Club (lhtac.com). ). “So if you’re lacking productivity, here are my top tips for staying accountable.”
Make a list of goals
This could be as simple as “go to the gym three times a week” or even a mindfulness goal like “meditate for 10 minutes a day.” Having a clear list of goals to check off throughout the day can increase motivation and also keep you accountable.
One of the main causes of seasonal depression is a lack of sunshine, and it can be easy to get into a rut. Try a brisk morning walk, open the blinds during the day, and find time to be in nature. The endorphins that are released during exercise make you feel good, just like the serotonin that is released when you are exposed to sunlight.’
Plan days and times for training
“Not only does this create accountability, but it also gives you the freedom to do whatever you want for the rest of the day. A clear plan that helps you achieve your goals can help with compliance.”
Find time for the things you love
“Whether that’s an hour to watch your favorite show, meet your friends, or even play an instrument, it’s important to do those things during the winter months.”
Self-care is extremely important and allows you to burn brighter as you fill your days with activities and rituals that nourish your soul rather than burn it out.
“Find a buddy at the gym. This makes it not only a healthy habit, but also a social outcome. You’re much more likely to stick to your plan if you have someone to have fun with and you feel obligated not to let them down. Plus, a little healthy competition never hurts, and it can be fun to push with a friend.
Put down your exercise equipment
“On the one hand, this saves time when looking for an outfit in the morning, but it also provides more motivation when you see your things lying there. Choose fun colors and wear clothes that make you want to go to the gym. The first step to looking good is feeling good, and sportswear plays a big part in that.”