It’s a tough time of year to stay motivated in the gym and in life. Dark by 4:00pm, freeze your balls off cold, wet, sloppy and everything within your being says…go home, snuggle up on the couch, munch a cookie and take a nap.
Your body is cold and stiff, you’re confined to the indoors, PR’s are coming few and far between, there is no good excuse to take your shirt off and flaunt your abs (which is the only reason you exercise in the first place) and you just aren’t feeling things like you were just a few short months ago.
So…what can you do to stay motivated through the cold and gloomy winter months, because, its a long haul and you don’t want to waste 4-6 months of potential aggressive exercise and muscle gains slothing around on the couch polishing off season after season on Netflix.
Here are a few simple suggestions that might help reignite your passion for the winter training season –
Keep your nutrition on point – It’s easy to let your diet get away from you in the winter as you crave warm, hearty meals and are surrounded by holiday treats. Instead, take advantage of seasonal produce like squash, beets, cruciferous veggies, brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, cranberries and pomegranates. If you are eating well, you will feel well, so don’t miss out on all the tasty healthy food available in the winter. THIS is my fave spaghetti squash recipe from PaleOMG, I add spinach and use turkey sausage instead.
Vitamin D for dayz – I have said it once and I will say it again, vitamin D is one of the most essential vitamins to supplement. Especially in the winter months when it’s almost impossible to get enough sun light. Hit the vitamin D and avoid the winter energy crash.
Set goals – Goals are what help to keep you motivated and get your ass to the gym. Without goals you are just a $200 hamster named Baby spinning your wheel and it’s easy to lose motivation….especially when times get tough and you are not seeing consistent improvements in your training. Define some goals for yourself, but don’t make them daunting. Small achievable goals will boost your confidence and help get your mojo back.
When I played basketball and was struggling to hit shots, I would make it my goal to get to the free throw line. After hitting a few easy buckets I would feel confident that I could make shots and my game would start to flow. Pick an exercise that is like a free throw and kill it, after that you will feel like you can do anything!
Train for something – Similar to setting goals, having an event to train for will be a great motivator. Sign up for a competition or a race, something that will keep you focused and give you a reason to get training.
Reflect on the why? – It’s important to understand why you do what you do…what is your motivator? Do you want to be healthy, have a 6 pack, participate in a competition, make friends, get strong as fuck or just feel good about yourself? Whatever the ‘why’, try to remind yourself of that frequently.
Get a training partner – Everything is better with a bestie. Find someone to workout with, preferably of similar abilities and keep each other on track. Not only is working out with someone way more fun, but its also motivational. The accountability that comes with having a training partner is essential…you’re not just going to leave your pal hanging, so it forces you to get work done even when you are not feelin’ it.
Surround yourself with happy people – Enjoying your time in the gym is much easier when you are surrounded by happy positive people. Here is a hot tip…if you want to feel pumped up, don’t hang out with me. I make a living off being a negative nancy…I apologize, my new years resolution is to be more positive and help to uplift the people around me. #Behappy
Be grateful – Take a moment everyday to be grateful for what you have. There are many people who can’t workout because they are injured, disabled, busy, stressed, depressed, hungry, financially burdened. You have the ability to workout everyday, you are healthy, you have a community behind you and you should be grateful for that. Take a quick moment to reflect and you will be happier for it.
Last but certainly not least: Beat that beat up – Get ready, get set, get pumped. Whenever I am feeling tired or low on energy I crank the tunes and have a dance party. I practice twerking in the mirror, until I realize that I do not in fact have an ass, in which case I promptly stop and just get down with my bad self.
Lately I have been channeling my inner bootylicious and getting low with Yonce! #cakebythepound