5 tips to stay motivated as the weather gets colder
Making exercise a priority during the colder months is often a struggle, yet hiding under the covers instead of going to the gym all season long can impact our overall health significantly. Here are our top tips to stay motivated this winter.
As the cold weather hits and the days get shorter, getting yourself up in the morning for that spinning class you’ve been promising you will go to takes a lot more motivation than it might do in July. Of course, staying warm under the blanket and scrolling through your phone sounds much more appealing, but a lack of physical activity all season long can impact our overall health significantly.
Ultimately, exercise makes us feel good, thanks to the release of endorphins, also known as the “happy hormone”. Yet the lack of sunlight during the winter season can reduce our serotonin levels, which play a part in balancing our moods. That is why maintaining your exercise regime in the colder months is important not just for your physical health, but your mental health too.
Five top tips to keep yourself motivated this winter
1. Buddy up
If you're struggling to find the inspiration to get moving, try encouraging a friend, member of your family or your partner to commit to a winter exercise routine with you. Knowing that you are letting someone else down when cancelling a workout can make you feel less inclined to do so. It could also change your perspective on working out to being something a little more enjoyable and sociable.
2. Exercise inside
Let’s face it, not many of us want to exercise outside in the winter months due to the bitter weather conditions that come with it but that doesn’t mean you can’t, even if you don’t have a gym membership. You can easily exercise in the comfort of your own home with just your body weight. And if you are unsure of where to start, YouTube is filled with many free workout videos that require no equipment.
3. Have the right kit
Although the phrase “dress for success” is a good motto to have professionally, it can also apply to the world of fitness. Ensuring you are dressed for the outdoors during the cooler months makes training much more comfortable and reduces the risk of catching a chill which could hinder performance. Investing in a brand new training outfit or pair of trainers not only contributes to success but can also really boost your motivation to exercise -it’s hard not to want to show them off at your next gym class!
4. Set a goal
Knowing your 'why' is essential to success, especially when embarking on a fitness journey. Firstly, determine what drives you to work out. Whether it's health-related, for weight loss, performance or self-confidence, your reason will help to set a goal. You could use the start of the summer as your goal deadline, so you have something to work towards.
Registering for a spring or summer event, such as a 10k or a half marathon or even booking a summer holiday is a surefire way to keep the motivation alive.
5. Eat well
During the winter months, it is normal to crave heartier portions due to the cold temperatures and the temptation of tasty treats becomes stronger as the supermarkets fill their shelves for Christmas festivities. But making nutrient-dense choices is the secret to winter health. Filling up on seasonal fruits and vegetables which are filled with nutrients can fuel your body with much-needed energy to help you to hit your goals. Try making homemade soups, and roasting root vegetables like carrots, parsnips and winter squash and don’t forget about winter fruits like pears and apples for a nutrient-dense snack that can satisfy your sweet tooth.
Get Medichecked this winter
A good way to monitor your fitness progress through the winter is with a simple blood test. Our Advanced Fitness Blood Test takes a more detailed look at the key markers which can help you optimise your training and performance including sports hormones and nutrition.