Staying active is one of the best ways to keep yourself healthy and fit. During the summer, it’s easy to have a strong desire to get out and move. However, when winter hits, motivation can be challenging to find.
Although it’s understandable, keeping up with the progress made in summer is extremely important. Letting go and giving up can have difficult repercussions, such as continued weight gain.
Reaching the point of obesity can have many negative outcomes such as diabetes, joint problems, and difficulty obtaining things such as life insurance.
Life insurance for overweight individuals is typically more expensive than it is for people who are healthy and active, meaning you’ll be paying more to cover yourself if you let your progress slip too far.
Although it’s difficult to keep yourself motivated when the winter months roll around, it’s important to do so. Otherwise, all your hard work will be lost.
Why is a healthy lifestyle harder to follow in winter?
Unless you’re one of the lucky people who live in a climate that stays relatively warm year-round, chances are you deal with the motivation-crushing season of winter.
Freezing temperatures, piles of snow, and whipping winds make it sound horrible to even step outside.
Even if you do live somewhere that doesn’t typically freeze, you are still dealing with shorter days and far less sunlight. Any or all of these factors can contribute to a lowered desire to be active.
Having to layer on clothes just to step outside, or it being pitch black outside by the time you get home from work make it difficult to want to get out and move. It’s understandable and something felt by many people throughout the months of winter.
Keeping the Progress Going
Although it is difficult to find motivation, there are some ways to still make it fun during winter. Whether you are an avid outdoor enthusiast or someone who enjoys working out in a gym, there are plenty of ways to keep your summer progress in the winter.
It’s hard for some people to enjoy the gym. Many people would rather be outside breathing fresh air instead of exercising inside. You may think there are not many ways to get your heart rate up in the winter, but there is an abundance of fun winter activities you can do to stay fit, keep up your progress, and get your body moving.
- Skiing or snowboarding – Many people are avid lovers of both these popular winter sports. They are an excellent way to burn calories and plenty of fun on top of it. You’ll be surprised to know that an hour of either can burn around 300 to 450 calories.
- Ice skating – Your mind may not always jump to ice skating when you imagine working out in the winter, but this fun activity can have you burning anywhere from 500 to 700 calories an hour if you are really working it.
- Hiking – People associate hiking with warmer months, but don’t underestimate the beauty of your favorite hiking trails in the winter. They are still stunning, and nothing is stopping you from bundling up and getting out there to bond with nature. Hiking is a great way to get your heart rate up and burn some calories.
- Running – If you’re an avid runner in the warmer months, you don’t have to stop simply because the temperature drops. Running in the winter can be just as enjoyable if you have the right gear.
There is no shortage of outdoor activities waiting to be enjoyed in the winter. Trying out one or all could lead you to find something you really enjoy doing, all while keeping your progress going.
If you don’t enjoy the cold temperatures outside, even bundled up, you can still keep your progress by working out in an indoor setting.
- Hitting the gym – This is likely the first indoor option that comes to most people’s minds, and for good reason. If you join a gym, you will have a massive selection of exercise equipment at your disposal to keep you fit and healthy.
If you’re new to the gym scene, it can seem intimidating, but going at a pace you feel comfortable with and working yourself up will allow you to feel confident in your workouts.
- Join a class – Many gyms and studios offer classes such as yoga or Pilates during the winter months. These can be a great way to not only keep your progress but also hold yourself accountable for attending.
Since classes are scheduled, you will know when you should be working out and will be more likely to go given the set time and date.
- Try an at-home workout – Between YouTube and purchasable videos, there are many options to choose from if you feel working out at home is your best option. Choose a program that works for you and get your body moving, all from the comfort of your own home.
There are plenty of options available for any skill and comfort level when it comes to working out in an indoor environment.
Finding the Motivation
If you have found the location that works best for you, you may still be struggling with the motivation to actually want to get out there and do your workout. There are a few ways you can mentally motivate yourself to get active.
Get a Workout Partner
Having another person hold you accountable while you also hold them accountable can be a huge mental motivator. Knowing someone is relying on you to encourage them and having someone there to encourage you can help increase your desire to exercise.
Even if you can’t physically work out with your partner, encourage each other to send videos or updates on progress. Talk frequently about what you are doing and the results you’re feeling or seeing. These updates can be extremely pleasing to share, therefore upping your motivation even more.
Create a Tracker
This is a great way to keep yourself accountable and track the progress you are making. Make a tracker with your goal at the end. It may be reaching a certain weight or completing a specific activity you were unable to do before.
Whatever it is, create a progress tracker on how you will reach this goal. At specific intervals throughout the tracker, have a reward you can earn for yourself. Then, leave your largest prize for when you reach your goal.
This tracker will not only allow you to look back and see how much progress you have made, thus keeping you even more motivated, but it will also encourage you to keep working knowing you will be treating yourself to things you love throughout the process.
Stick to Healthy Eating Habits
Your diet can kill your workout desire quicker than almost anything. Eating poor food choices can cause you to feel lethargic and unmotivated. Making sure to choose healthy food can also help you to ace your life insurance medical exam.
Choosing healthy options and maintaining a proper diet to fuel your body can provide you with more energy for your workouts, therefore skyrocketing your progress.
Winters Don’t Have to Be Blue
It can be difficult to shake off the feelings winter brings. Minimal sunlight and cold weather make it hard to stay motivated.
Keep in mind fitness is a dedicated journey that doesn’t stop simply because it snows. It is a choice you must stick to if you want to see results and keep them.
Trying any or all of these options can help you stay motivated, even during the winter season.
Alexandra Arcand writes and researches for the life insurance comparison site, EffortlessInsurance.com. She is an outdoor enthusiast who loves to stay active, even in the winter.