5 surefire ways to stick with your winter workout routine

When it’s cold out and you’re overtired from too many holiday engagements, it’s easy to just roll over, hit the snooze button and skip your workout. But trust me, doing so will leave you feeling even more sluggish and lead to even more poor food decisions during the day. Besides, in a time of food excess, getting your sweat on will help keep your metabolism and hunger on track. Plus, if you know you have a workout planned the next day, you’re a lot less likely to overindulge on the holiday cocktails.

winter running

Thinkstockphoto.ca

Here’s some of the things I’ve learned:

1. Set a schedule. If you plan a weekly workout schedule you’ll be more likely to stick with your goals. There’s no chance you’ll wake up wondering what you should do that day and then decide to go back to bed. Make your own schedule and put it in a Google doc or get a personal trainer to help you with a weekly schedule. Track your progress with one of these awesome fitness apps like Strava.

Strava

2. Sign up for a group activity. Whether it’s a winter running group at The Running Room or a Pilates class, sign up for an activity with a friend or by yourself. That accountability of having paid your hard earned money and working out with a group of like-minded people will help you stay on track.

3. Just get up and get going. As Nike would say, “Just do it!”. It’s a cycle–if you work out you’ll have more energy and hence, it will get easier to work out. Here’s a personal example:  I swim at a public pool twice a week where the average swimmer ranges anywhere from 15 to 90-years-old. I like to listen to the older ladies chat in the changeroom and here’s what I’ve learned: They just do it. They complain about aches and illnesses but they show up like clockwork because you just have to keep at it. It also helps to have a group who will notice and ask you about why you missed your last swim.

4. Buy some new gym clothes. Investing in some really cool (or functional) workout clothing might help you get to the gym this season. Or if you’re an outdoor exerciser, the right gear will make all the difference in how enjoyable your workout will be. (For example, running shoes with some serious grip for ice or a great vest will keep you warm outside and let you work out harder and longer.) I love these GapFit gFast printed leggings, $60, gapcanada.ca.

gapfit leggings

5. Buy a good alarm clock. No matter where you live in Canada right now, it’s dark when your alarm clock goes off. I, for one, need some kind of daylight to get me going and I have found an amazing solution. The Philips Wake-up Light HF3505 is a game-changer. I got to test-drive this product for our January issue of Canadian Living and I fell in love. It’s on my Christmas wish-list! This light gently starts to glow brighter in the 30 minutes  before your alarm goes off and turns on either a radio or bird noises. My boyfriend and I opened our eyes within seconds of each other and it was one of the most relaxing way to wake up (besides natural sunshine on a beach vacation). Take that loud, bleeping iPhone alarm!

Wake up Light HF3505

Find the Philips Wake-up Light HF3505 for $100, philips.ca.

Share with us—how do you keep yourself motivated in the winter?