Winter Workout Tips to Keep You Motivated

by Kelly Buresh, Certified Personal Trainer

There is no question that the winter months are some of the most difficult to manage in terms of sticking to health and fitness goals. The chill in the air certainly lends itself to cozying up by the fire and the prolonged darkness makes sleeping in far more appealing than hitting the gym for a sweat session. As the determination to achieve our New Year goals begins to wane and we are left dreaming of a tropical vacation, the biting cold sneaking under our coat collars serves as a reminder to seize the opportunities winter brings.  

1. Embrace a cold weather activity
2. Pick up new “hot” habits
3. Give your produce drawer a makeover

This time of year provides us with a multitude of activities that only come but once a year! Try not to let the chill in the air keep you indoors; use this winter to explore a new outdoor activity. Give cross country skiing a try, take your kids ice skating, or grab some friends and head down a new path on some snowshoes. The change in seasons can also mean a chance to prevent an exercise rut.  Make the most of the cold weather and you may just find yourself wishing winter would stick around so you can enjoy your new passions.

If you simply can’t muster the motivation to brave the freezing temperatures, head indoors for a workout that’s warm and inviting.  Decide to work on your downward dog and pick up your mat for a little hot yoga. There is much to be said for taking on a new challenge, so beat out the winter blues and work up a sweat with some buds in a kickboxing class. The cold weather is no excuse to skimp on the cardio when you can trade in your outdoor walks for some laps in a heated pool.   

When you finally come inside from the cold, there are many healthy ways to warm back up again. Grab a cup of antioxidant-rich tea or hot cocoa that is sure to warm you up from the inside out. Start a new and healthy Super Bowl tradition by finding a turkey chili recipe for everyone to enjoy. Your guests’ tummies and waistlines will thank you! The Farmers Markets may be closed, but the produce available in winter can be just as exciting as your summertime favorites. Try making your winter salads with a mix of in-season kale, chard, endive and radicchio. Change up your post-workout smoothie routine by adding some kale and oranges to the mix.  Swap your fries for roasted butternut squash or even parsnips. This change of pace not only helps give new life to your weekly dinner routine, but it can give your immune system an extra boost.

If all else fails, book yourself that tropical vacation you’ve been dreaming of and use it as motivation to keep your workouts going strong and to “slowly put down and walk away” from the sugar-laden treats!