Have problems keeping up your winter fitness routine? If you’re like most people, when cold weather sets in, your first reaction is probably to hibernate and set your fitness routine aside until spring. After all, you can hide the few pounds that you gain under over-sized sweatshirts and baggy jeans, so it doesn’t really matter, right? Wrong.
According to The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, maintaining a healthy weight helps lower your risk for developing serious medical issues such as “heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, breathing problems, and certain cancers.” It also makes you feel better about yourself while providing more than enough energy to fully enjoy your life.
So how can you keep up your winter fitness routine more easily in order to take advantage of these types of benefits (and more)?
3 Easy Ways to Keep Up Your Winter Fitness Routine
Grab a Friend
Everything is easier when you don’t have to do it alone. Grabbing a buddy to exercise with you is a great way to stay committed during the cold winter months. Hanging out with friends has also been linked to lower levels of depression, higher self-esteem, and a greater feeling of support, which means that you gain more than just physical benefits when you exercise together. Plus, when you know your friend is expecting you to show up, it’s pretty hard to leave them hanging, so you’re more inclined to honor your workout commitments.
Some great exercises to do with a pal include joining a group fitness class, walking or jogging side-by-side on an indoor track, or simply using exercise machines that are next to each other. In the end, it doesn’t really matter what you’ll be doing as you’re sure to have a lot more fun doing it together!
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Come Up With a New Winter Fitness Schedule
In an article created to help new college students avoid gaining the freshman 15, College News states “there is absolutely no one-size-fits-all approach to exercise.”
In other words, you need to come up with a personalized fitness schedule that works for your specific schedule or you’re not likely to stick to it.
This is especially true if your lifestyle changes when it gets colder outside.
For instance, if you like to go home right after work during the winter because you don’t want to be out on slippery roads late at night.
Then you may be better off scheduling your gym time in the morning. Or, if you normally run outside but don’t like to when it is snowy and icy to prevent slipping and falling.
Then perhaps a treadmill is just what you need to stick with your program. Basically, you have to figure out what will work best for you this time of year and make a plan to ensure that it happens.
Sign Up for a Spring Fitness Event
Another way to keep you motivated when the days are shorter and colder is to sign up for a fitness event that takes place in the spring. This will help you stick to your workout regimen because you know you have to be ready once the event day arrives.
Depending on where you live, these events could be a 5k or 10k, cycle race, or triathlon. Or, if you’re really up to a challenge, you may even consider doing a Tough Mudder or some other body and mind-draining obstacle course. Surely you can’t skimp on your winter workouts then!
Even though you may be tempted to let your fitness slide when it gets cold, don’t. Instead, do these three relatively easy things and you can reach your fitness goals all year round!
How do you like to stay active during the winter? Please share your winter fitness routines in the comments section below!
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This is a guest post written for The Failed Dieter by Shelly Stinson. Shelly is a freelance writer currently residing in Denver, Colo. In addition to writing and researching her latest project, she enjoys hiking through the Colorado wilderness and exploring Denver’s killer restaurant scene. You can find Shelly on Twitter under the handle @shellystins.