How To Maintain Your Workouts During The Winter
As both the temperature and amount of sunlight per day start to wane, most people find it harder and harder to get out and exercise. And if you are in a snowy area, running outside can be an invite for an injury if you happen to slip and fall, not to mention breathing in all of that cold air.
However, there are techniques used by people living in cold climates that work to fuel your winter workouts.
Set Up a Home Gym
Regardless of the size of your living space, everyone has room for a small home gym. It doesn’t have to have multiple pieces of large (and expensive) equipment. With just an adjustable weight bench and a selection of dumbells, you can do a lot – at least 18 different exercises that work both the upper and lower body along with the abdominal core. Also, there are hundreds of good cardio and strength training workout videos that just use bodyweight. If you have the room, you can add a treadmill or elliptical trainer to take your cardio training to the next level.
Exercise with a Buddy
When you establish a commitment to each other to meet at the gym, it is more difficult to bow out and not go. If the truth be known, your buddy may not have felt like exercising that day also, but because each of you did not want to disappoint the other, both of you went (and were happier for it afterward).
Nobody likes to fail. It is always harder to forego exercising if you have an end goal lurking in your mind. Whether it is to drop 20 pounds by spring or run in the Easter half marathon, having that constant goal in mind is a great motivator. And if the end goal seems too far away, set smaller intermediate goals so that when you reach one, you have the next larger one to work toward. Once you reach a goal, treat yourself, but with something that doesn’t sabotage your efforts.
Warm Up Before You Go Outside
This works because none of us like to be cold. By warming up before going outside, and then layering up, you’ll stay warm. As your body gets warmer, peel off layers to keep from getting overheated.
Exercising in the winter does not have to be something you dread. Make it fun by using the tips in this article.
Indoor Workout Alternatives for When It’s Just Too Cold to Go Outside
When the weather turns cold and blustery, it is hard to force yourself to go to the gym, but you don’t have to. You can still get a great workout in the comfort of your home. Here are some cardio, strength training, core exercises and exercise routine suggestions that you can do with simple (if any) equipment.
If you have stairs in your house (or even if you don’t) stepping will get your heart pumping. Go up and down at a rate where it makes carrying on a conversation hard. If you don’t have stairs, you can substitute by putting a couple of thick hard cover books on the floor and stepping up and down on them while watching TV. Or buy a stepper from Amazon or your favorite fitness store for less than $25.00 USD.
Another simple cardio exercise is jumping rope. While it doesn’t work well on carpeting, if you have any type of smooth floor, it works great. If you don’t have any smooth floors, substitute jumping jacks for jumping rope.
Strength training can range from something as simple as doing bicep curls with a filled water bottle in each hand to having a small weight bench and a few dumbbells. Weights and a bench don’t take up much room and gives you the ability to do 18 different exercises. If you outgrow dumbbells, you can move up to barbells.
Planks are an all-round great exercise for developing your abdominal core. There are so many different types that you never get bored. Side, face-down, feet elevated, one leg raised or one arm raised are just some of the variations to the basic plank.
Abdominal crunches or presses are also good exercise for your core as are bridges. And none of the core exercises require any equipment at all! Instructions on how to do all of the core exercises are found on YouTube.
If you like a more structured program, there are hundreds of different exercise routines of all varieties available for purchase on DVDs or for free on YouTube. Alternating between your own routines and a few of these adds creativity to your fitness program and prevents boredom from setting in.
All of these exercises will kick butt without leaving the comfort of your home. Don’t give up on exercising when the weather turns bad. Stay home and workout using the suggestions in this article.
6 Tips for Sticking to Your Exercise Routine Throughout the Holidays
The hectic holidays should not get in the way of your exercise. Can holidays be stressful, busy and time-starved? Of course they can. But this doesn’t mean that a smart approach to your physical fitness should take a back seat to celebrating this special time of the year. The following 6 tips will allow you to enjoy your holiday revelry, while also seamlessly sticking to your exercise routine.
1 – Plan and perform traditional holiday activities all year long. Why wait until the holidays to go shopping for gifts and decorations? What’s wrong with planning your Christmas party or Thanksgiving dinner in July? Spreading your holiday tasks throughout the year means plenty of time for even the most intense exercise regimen.
2 – Why not wake up one hour earlier than normal? Hey, we get it. You consider the holidays as a time to sleep late and be lazy. But that’s not why you are exercising. Rising early 3 to 5 days a week to exercise and workout fills you with natural energy all day long, and doesn’t get in the way of your hectic holiday schedule.
3 – Pick your spots. You may regularly exercise for 1 hour at a time, 5 times a week. Due to an incredibly busy holiday schedule, you may have to alter that frequency and duration. Squeeze in 15, 20 and 30 minute sessions of exercise wherever and whenever you can to satisfy your weekly goals.
4 – Eat to support your workout. This means limiting the amount of unhealthy, nutritionally poor foods and beverages you consume. Drinking 4 cups of eggnog, gorging on sugar-filled holiday treats and finishing the evening with 3 or 4 glasses of wine or adult beverages is not conducive to fitness fuel the next day when you have planned to exercise.
5 – Don’t mentally flog yourself if you miss a workout. The holidays should be times of creating and sharing wonderful memories and activities with those you love and care about. So what if you miss a workout? Just remember holiday exercise tip #3, and make up that workup later.
6 – Get someone else involved. You are probably not the only person you know who struggles with sticking to an exercise routine during the holidays. So why not team up with someone else who is experiencing the same problems? Get a friend, coworker or family member involved in your holiday exercise plans, and you can help each other achieve your fitness goals.