When it’s cold, dark and rainy out, it’s all too easy to swap the gym for a cosy spot on the couch. But keeping active during the colder months is so important for our physical and mental wellbeing.
In addition to maintaining your strength and cardiovascular health, you’ll gain all the mental benefits of exercising, such as improved mood, reduced stress and relief from anxiety – which are particularly important during winter for those who suffer from seasonal affective disorder.
In this article, we’ll explore a few tips and ideas to help you get your body moving this winter.
1. Exercise indoors
Now is the time to get the most out of your gym membership (or sign up for one) and enjoy working out in a temperature-controlled environment. Sometimes all it takes is getting your gym gear on and showing up. Once you’re there, you’ll find more often than not, you’re willing to put in the effort. Any movement is great for your body, so consider even just a few minutes of exercise a victory.
Take advantage of fitness classes, where again, just showing up is half the battle. No need to come up with a workout plan, your instructor will provide all the guidance you need. Once you get started, you’re almost guaranteed to finish the session. Plus, there are so many options when it comes to fitness classes, so whether you prefer strength training, yoga, spin or pilates, you’re sure to find something you’ll enjoy.
However, if leaving the house is totally unthinkable, then get it done at home. With a wealth of workout resources online, there’s no reason not to get up and get moving in the warmth of your home. There are countless options, like YouTube videos, for all types of exercise and for all levels of fitness. Although, you may want to invest in a few equipment staples (yoga mat, dumbbells, resistance bands, etc.) to make your options greater and workouts more effective.
2. Pick up the pace!
While there’s a certain appeal to hibernating indoors, don’t underestimate the power of an outdoor workout. Conquer the crisp winter temperatures by warming up before you leave home and increasing your pace.
A brisk walk or jog on a cool day can do wonders for your health and your mood. Not only does it give you a reason to step outside and get some fresh air, but it can serve as a kind of meditation, helping you to relax and de-stress.
Be sure to change up your routes to keep things interesting. Explore new places and enjoy the lush greenery that winter brings.
3. Invest in winter activewear
It’s the perfect excuse for a shopping trip. Sometimes the only thing standing between you and your winter workout is the right gear. Investing in some high-quality winter activewear will make your workouts more comfortable and even provide a certain amount of motivation when you’re staring into your closet dreading getting changed.
Fleece-lined leggings, moisture-wicking thermal tops and waterproof jackets will keep you warm and dry (if you’re heading outdoors). Don’t forget warm socks, gloves and a beanie to protect your extremities from the chill. Just remember to opt for breathable layers so that you can remove them as your body warms up.
4. Exercise with a partner
If you’re finding it hard to stay motivated during winter, enlist the help of a workout partner. Whether it’s a friend, family member or a neighbour, working out together makes the daunting task a lot less daunting. With a partner, you’ll have a lot more fun and be held accountable at the same time. Your partner doesn’t have to share your usual fitness routine. You could go for a morning walk or do a yoga session at home together. The idea is to make your workout less of a chore and more of a social activity.
Staying active in winter certainly requires more planning and dedication, but the benefits are so worth it. Exercising will improve your physical health and fitness, boost your mood and combat those winter blues. So, embrace the cold season and adjust your workout routine accordingly; you’ll find that staying fit and active is definitely possible this winter.
As winter approaches, why not make Sista Fitness your sanctuary for fitness and wellbeing? With premium facilities and fitness classes, we’re here to keep you active and motivated through winter and beyond. Get in touch for more information.