Summertime is my favorite time of year. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, snot doesn't freeze to your face when you go outside... I could go on and on. It really is the most wonderful season, especially for a beach girl like myself.
If I had to choose, I think that my favorite thing about the warmer months is how much easier it is to get things done, especially when it comes to working out. For some reason, it's not as challenging to get into your car and drive to the gym, a class, or to a running path when it's warm outside. During the winter, it takes everything in me and then some just to leave the warmth of my house in order to brave just the walk from my front door to my car, never mind a full-blown outdoor run.
When it's cold and miserable outside, we are forced to forego the fun, creative workouts of summer, like outdoor circuits at the park, runs on the beach, bike rides through town and exciting track time trials. Unfortunately, when the snow starts to fall and the temperatures drop, it seems like we're left with only one option: the gym.
Now don't get me wrong, I love a good gym workout. Sometimes I just really need a squat rack and some dumbbells and I'm a happy camper. However, I also need change in order to stay motivated, so I really rely on being able to change up my workouts and do new things at new places. Some days I want to run the track, other days I want to use the monkey bars, and sometimes I just really need the sand beneath my feet adding a little extra resistance.
So how does one stay motivated in the winter when the gym becomes a snooze-fest? Here are a few tricks:
1. Go for an outdoor run.
I know, I know... I was once an avid opponent of the wintertime run, but I've recently come to change my tune. On days when it's mild (above freezing and partly sunny - do not attempt a run when theres a lot of snow or ice on the ground!), a run can be really refreshing and almost more comfortable than running in the heat! Dress in layers so that you can peel them off as your body temperature rises, and opt for a hat or an ear warmer and some gloves, as your ears and fingers are the first things to freeze up. Start small, then add miles as you get more comfortable in the cold. Nothing is worse than the treadmill, so grab your high socks and get outside! In my area? Check out the Fit By Gab Running Club here and join us for a run!
2. Change up your gym routine.
Most of us have a pretty standard gym routine, but that can get boring fast. Have you tried a HIIT routine? What about some cardio circuit training with dumbbells? If you're used to the same old stuff, the winter is the perfect time to change it up! Not sure where to begin? My General Online Training is the prescription to this exact problem, offering 5 workouts a week of creative, fun new gym OR home routines. Check out more information on that here.
3. Try a new class.
The winter is the perfect time to try that new boutique fitness studio you've heard so much about. Whether you want to try yoga, pilates, cycling, bootcamp or HIIT, a comfortable indoor studio is the perfect place to go when it's cold out. While memberships at these places might come at a steep price, you can justify it by noting that it's only for the winter, and that by the time spring comes around, you'll be able to pick and choose your favorite parts and incorporate them into your own workouts.
4. Work out with a friend.
The gym becomes a whole lot less boring when you've got a buddy! Workout out with a friend will give you tons of new ideas (you'd be amazed at how different your routine can be from your friend!) and having someone there will prevent you from slacking off or leaving early. Some of my best workouts are with a partner, and in the winter, I need as many good workouts as I can get! Working out with a trainer is another great way to change up your routine and ensure accountability, so if you're in need of a gym partner-in-crime, click here!
No matter how you slice it, winter is not the most ideal time for workouts, but if you want to feel confident on the beach in the summertime, it's the most crucial season for sweating! Whatever you do, stay solid in your program and you will see the results you want by summer!