Tips to Fuel Your Fittest Winter Yet
Summer has gone and Fall is slipping by the quickest it ever has. You're proud of yourself for sticking to your workout regime, and, In fact, you felt better than ever the last few months without the sticky heat of July and August. The colorful foliage to greet you as you stepped outside wasn't so bad either.
Winter, though, is fast approaching. Winter is when even the most die-hard fitness fanatics can have a little trouble getting out the door. Fortunately, we have some tips to achieve your fittest one yet.
It’s Cold. So, get warmed up ahead of time:
Waking Up: Take the time to prepare for your workout the night before- crank your thermostat, sleep in the clothes you’ll be wearing the next morning, buy some extra blankets. Do everything you can to wake up warm and the winter air will feel refreshing and rejuvenating.
Take A Shower: If you wake up bundled up and you’re still cold, hit the shower. Not only will this warm you up, it will wake you up.
Warm up: If all else fails, get your heart-rate up. Find some drills that feel good and get moving inside before your workout. Throw some dynamic stretching in while you’re at it.
Prone to making big plans and ditching them in favor of your snooze button? Look for accountability.
Meet a friend: There’s nothing quite like knowing you have a friend waiting for you who will have to go out in the cold and dark weather alone if you don’t show up. Even worse, you could cause them to bail on their work out too. It’s something you’re unlikely to let happen. Furthermore, working out can be a great time to catch up with friends you don't get to connect with as often as you'd like.
Use technology: Share your enthusiasm: These days, there are all sorts of ways to let the world know what you’re goals are while reaping the rewards of the encouragement that will inevitably come from those who support you. Whether it’s a wearable device that tracks your progress and automatically shares it on a social network, or a social network where you write the post yourself to update the world, using that accountability can be powerful. Many people find that encouraging others can motivate more than ever. If you’re regulalrly finding inspiration in others’ acheivements or pushing others to stick with their program, you will inevitably remind yourself why you should stick with yours.
Group Fitness: Can’t find a friend who has a workout schedule similar to use? Inspirartion through a screen not cutting it? Enter, free fitness communities. A quick internet search will reveal the kinds of free fitness groups that meet regularly. Whether your interest lies in bootcamps, running, or yoga, chances are there’s a group for you. This is especially true in big cities. Most of these groups are extremely welcoming to newcomers, meant for all abilities, and best of all, you make a few new best friends along the way.
Okay, okay. But it’s really dark.
Let the light in: For those of you who work out before and after work, it’s pretty likely that it’s dark. Winter months bring shorter days, and with that, all sorts of new challenges to consider. Try investing in a UV lamp to wake yourself up in the morning and get your internal clock going. Try this one out from Philips.
Change your timing: Do you have a shower at work? A lunch break? Those of us with full-time jobs usually have to stick with morning or evening workouts, but consider the lunchtime run or class. Not only will you get your workout in with daylight, but you’ll come back to the office feeling energized and hyper-focused.
Alarm tricks: We all have that song. You know the one. It pumps you up like nothing else. You sing it in the shower and dance to it alone in your room when you should be getting ready for bed. Set this song as your alarm and start your morning off with a little excitement. Remember how we talked about warming up? Dancing counts.
Not enough to get you out the door consistently? We're not done yet.
Buy the right clothing: Yes, winter clothing is expensive. Especially, athletic gear. Do you know why winter gear is expensive? Because it works. Buying winter gear from a reputable athletic brand will prepare you take on the weather. There are all sorts of items designed to keep you warm, water-proofed, and visible. They will protect you from the elements and make stepping out your door much easier. Even better, new gear can be exciting to put on and try out.
Check out Nike flash gear.
Make a plan/set a goal/ sign up for a race: The thought of taking on a race you’re unprepared for can be enough to make sure you don’t let it happen. Setting long-term goals and measuring your progress toward those goals is one of the best ways to stay focused and inspired. Even better, you can make an adventure out of it. Sign up for a race in a warmer climate, and turn it into something to look forward to- a reward for your hard work.
Try something new: If all else fails, explore. Not only is trying something new exciting and great for your body, but you may meet a new group of friends or a coach to keep you invested and on track. If you usually run outside, try a treadmill studio where classes are interactive, interesting, and dry and warm. If you enjoy rock climbing, find an indoor gym. Or try something completely different from anything you’ve done before. You may discover your new favorite way to get moving.