5 Ways to Beat the Winter Exercise Blues!

Baby, it’s cold outside…

It’s been a cold, cold, cold winter here in New York! Add to that, the ground has frozen and covered with snow for weeks. And all that cold and snow isn’t just here in the Northeast — it seems like it’s been quite a colder than usual for most parts of the U.S. this year.

For many of us, winter and exercise are a bit like oil and water — they don’t mix. When those bitter cold winds swoop in from the north, it’s often easy to skip a trip to the gym and instead curl up on the couch with a warm quilt and a good read.

So with a cozy couch as your wintertime temptation, it can be a challenge to get in a workout. Here are a 5 tips I tell my clients to help them forget the cold and remember the rewards of exercise.

  1. Put-together one or two cold-weather workout outfits. With a warm and comfortable outfit always ready, you will be more likely to exercise on frigid days.
  2. Choose outfits made up of several layers. That way, when you’re warming up in a fitness studio or outdoors for a walk or run, you can take off layers as needed. After your workout, as you begin to cool, layers can be added back on.
  3. Keep inspirational photos visible at home and on your devices. Photos will remind you each day why exercise is important and what your goals are, even when that couch is calling your name! It might be a picture of running shoes you plan to reward yourself with when you meet a certain goal. Or, perhaps, if you’re working hard to lose weight and improve muscle tone, a “before” photo of yourself will remind you of your progress. You might also consider using pictures of family members, athletes, celebrities, or trainers that inspire you to stay healthy and fit. Try Pinterest – a great source and place to “pin” inspiration fitness photos!
  4. Add your workouts to your cell phone and computer calendars so they show up as set appointment times. It’s always a good idea to pencil in your workouts so that you commit that time on your schedule to yourself on a regular basis. Exercise is an appointment with yourself that you truly can’t afford to miss. After all, we know that regular exercise is an important part of staying healthy. Schedule weekend workouts outdoors (yes! even in the cold!) with a friend, partner, child or even your pooch! A brisk walk, ice skating, sledding…all beat out time spent on the couch!
  5. Try a fitness tracker like Fitbit, Bia GPS Sports Watch, Jawbone or Nike Fuel Band that help you set goals and track your progress daily and over time. Fitness trackers can make it easy to calculate your daily steps, calorie count, nutrition, hydration, exercise and even sleep! It’s amazing how these devices can motivate you as well as hold you accountable!

So don’t let the couch lure you into submission in the cold winter weather…find ways to help yourself.

Think Fit, Plan Fit, GET FIT!
(hang in there…Spring is around the corner!)

Yours In Fitness,

Colleen Ketchum,
Founder of the BeyondBarre Method and
Owner of Pilates In Motion Fitness Studio, Warwick, NY