They say that summer bodies are made in the winter but let’s face it: it’s tough to maintain workout motivation during the colder months. It’s freezing outside. Our energy levels are lower when the skies are grey and cloudy. Sometimes, we might be stuck at home during inclement weather. How are we supposed to stay fit when we’re stuck indoors and shivering?
One of the tricks to winter fitness motivation is to get creative. Here are some ways you can stay fit year-round:
Having a workout buddy can be a great way to maintain motivation. What happens if your workout buddy loses motivation - or worse, if you can’t find a workout buddy to begin with? Enter: Crossfit. With Crossfit classes, you don’t just have one workout buddy; you have an entire room full of them. For less than the cost of most private personal trainers, you’ll have a group of supportive people cheering you on as you learn safe, effective ways to work out all year long.
Another benefit of doing a program such as Crossfit instead of going to the gym solo or working out at home is that you’ll learn the proper form. This will help prevent common sprains, muscle strains, and other fitness-related injuries that could potentially prevent you from achieving your fitness goals.
Spice up the treadmill.
Indoor workouts are often made possible by trips to the gym or the use of home equipment, such as treadmills or ellipticals. However, many people face a common internal struggle when it comes to working out on these machines: boredom. Treadmills, ellipticals, and other fitness machines don’t exactly provide a lot of variety. When you’re working out indoors, you’re often staring at the same scenery. Whether that happens to be the television, the other people in the gym, the scenery out the window, or the wall beside you, it can get pretty dull and predictable.
Enter: the smartphone app. These days, there are many iOS and Android apps that are working to end this common complaint. For instance, apps like Studio and Sweatcoin not only turn fitness into a competition with other users, complete with a virtual “class,” a motivational instructor, and a killer soundtrack with bumping BPM; these apps literally pay you to work out. Similar to Bitcoin, you’ll earn cryptocurrency each time you work out. With Sweatcoin, for example, you can trade your cryptocurrency in for fitness-related items such as Apple Watches or running gear.
So what’s the catch? These apps are not free. You’ll pay a monthly fee to use the service, and if you don’t complete your workouts, you’ll lose money rather than earning it. If the thought of earning (or losing) money doesn’t motivate you to work out, I don’t know what will!
Working out with Fido
If you’re a pet owner, this can be another excuse to stay active - and to get creative while doing it. During the winter, your dog will need to stay active, too. Why not find a way to work out with your favorite four-legged friend? Some ideas you might consider include playing a game of hide and seek, fetch, or tug-o-war. You might also consider enrolling your dog in an indoor agility class or trying an indoor obstacle course.
Of course, your dog will need some outdoor time a few times per day to, erm, take care of business. Why not take advantage of those few minutes as a fitness activity for you both? Bundle up, grab a leash, and take your dog on a brisk jog. As long as there’s no ice or snow, it’s safe for a stroll and the cold weather will make you both want to move quicker so you can get back indoors as soon as possible. For other ideas, check out this guide from Rover.
No matter what type of workout you choose, it’s important to stay safe and warm. Invest in the right gear. Bundle up. Go slow. Warm up your cold muscles before starting your daily workout routine. Winter can be a great time to exercise but always listen to your body. If anything burns or pinches, ease up and be gentle with yourself. You’re building healthy fitness habits to last you all year - and hopefully, all of your life.