Winter is a tough time to commit to your exercise goals. Reduced daylight hours and influxes of cold weather and snow have a way of making you rethink your fitness plans. Even though exercising during this season is difficult, it is still tremendously good for your health. Here are seven tips for staying fit during winter.
- Reach Small Milestones
Working out during winter is challenging, but that doesn’t mean you can’t achieve smaller goals to feel good about yourself without exerting too much energy. Set realistic goals for yourself so that you can stay motivated despite the winter blues. It’s okay to dial down your mileage if the weather is poor. Go for 3 miles instead of 5 when the weather hits. You’ll still be working towards better health and maintaining your endurance.
- Find Your Bliss
While it’s more challenging to get out the door and workout, once you get started and your body has a chance to warm up, you might see that cold weather is a gift! You get to cool off with a frigid breeze when your aching limbs are on fire! It’s only possible to cool off while working out in the summer by wearing light layers. Think of the winter as a fitness booster so that you can get into a rhythm and find your bliss working out.
- Find Winter Running Shoes
Picking the right winter running shoes will make all the difference to the success of your workout. The right fitness shoes will remind you that you are serious about your health. Take time to find the styles and fits that work the best for you. Choose options that allow for breathability and have sweat-resistant technology built-in. Some compression sneakers even have padding that helps your feet remain comfortable mile after mile.
- Workout with Friends
It’s easier to stick to a workout regime with friends by your side. They are counting on you as much as you are on them to show up and get moving. Look for fitness groups in your community or get a group of friends together who are willing to exercise with you.
- Stay Mentally Motivated
If you’re out in the cold, you can drown out the winter winds with the right playlist or podcast to keep your mind entertained as you work out. Get some wireless earbuds to knock out the noise and indulge in your favorite motivational speaker or musician as you do your strength or cardio.
- Create Mini Rewards
Please give yourself a much-deserved treat after your workout to keep you motivated and optimistic about exercising, even when it’s complicated. Go for a hot chocolate or bulletproof coffee following a run or put a sticker on your calendar signifying that you’ve completed another workout day. You’ll be proud of yourself for getting through it and will feel stronger over time as more progress piles up.
- Rest and Recover Rituals
Demanding workouts require rest and recovery rituals to balance out what your body needs to stay fit. Restore tired muscles and joints with gentle stretching, hot packs, and perhaps some yoga to rest and recharge in time for your next workout. When you are working on increasing your training during cold months, your body will need all the warmth and recovery it can get. Consider bringing hand warmers with you on your runs and double up on your socks to take care of your extremities. Take care of your mental health, too, with journaling or guided meditations suited to your fitness goals.
Working out during the cold months requires a little extra effort to stay committed. You might find that these additional steps are actually a bit of fun! Enjoy the journey, and always look for creative ways to get past the snow and onto your workout. Your body and mind will thank you!