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5 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues and Stay Motivated this Season

By SJ McShane

The #winter #blues; it rears its ugly head each year and at times, no one is exempt. What causes these winter blues and why do we get them? Many reasons: the warm sunshine radiating off of your skin is greatly reduced, blizzards can often bring the onset of “cabin fever”, workout schedules take a back seat to weather conditions along with less outdoor training opportunities. With that said, where there is a will there’s a way, and you can most definitely keep those blues away!

The key to keep motivation levels high and saving the blues for the color of the sky is forming a simple plan of attack. Yes, its that’s easy! So, don’t fret the winter blues this season, instead move forward with confidence and a plan in hand as we dive into a few ways to make your winter workout season a success!

Create a Back-Up Workout Plan

As the roads get icy and the snowfall rises, driving to the gym might not be an option. This doesn’t mean you have to miss out on your training sessions. Although you may not have equipment on hand, you do have one of the best workout tools- your body. Before winter rolls in, write down at least 10 at-home workouts that will get you sweaty! They don’t have to be fancy, just get moving.

Here’s an example: 10 push-ups, 20 bodyweight squats, 10 tricep dips, 20 alternating lunges, and 20 scissor kicks. Perform each move back-to-back for 5 rounds. Trust me, you will get a great workout and feel super accomplished! So, get out your pen and paper because it’s going to be a great winter!

Get a winter workout buddy

There’s something about the support of others that can take a stressful situation and change it all around for the better. Just as you would meet a workout partner at the gym during the warmer months, it may be even more vital to have this relationship during the winter. Schedule workout times at the gym together- this will ensure the cold and grey days won’t keep you locked in the house. If the weather conditions are a bit intimidating, schedule a “face time” session and workout together. There is power in numbers!

Get outside

If weather permits, one of the best things one can do to beat- the -blues is to get in the great outdoors. Studies show that feelings of anxiety and depression can lessen a considerable amount of natures medicine. From taking a walk around the block with your pup to building a snowman with loved ones, the great outdoors is a surefire way to send sadness running in the opposite direction. So, bundle up and feel the coolness on your cheeks! It’s going to be a great day!

Try a new Sport

With snowfall also comes some pretty amazing sports! You don’t have to be a seasoned athlete to give them a try either. Search your local listings for sports and activities and see what your area is offering. Trying something new is always exciting! This is a great way to develop better conditioning, build new relationships, and good memories. Here are some pretty neat winter sports that just might spark some excitement! Ice #Skating, #Curling, #Snowshoeing, #Crosscountry #Skiing, #snowkiting, and #snowtubing. Running up the snow tubing hills alone will give you an amazing workout- the ride down is pretty fun too😉!

Get Creative- All you need to do is move. Movement is everything. It produces the “feel good” hormones in our brains and ensures a special spot for motivation in our minds. It simply feels good to feel good! With that said, look around you, is it snowing? If so, take some of your friends and have snowman building contest! Let out your inner child and build away! I know that shoveling snow may not be at the top of your “fun” list, but getting outside and shoveling some snow can most certainly burn calories and build strength; plus, it will make others around you thankful, especially if you help those in your neighborhood who might not be as strong as you. Instead of letting the not-so-bright weather conditions get you down, look around and see what you can do to spruce up your mind through movement.

Extra Quick Tips to keep #motivation at its peak

Dress for the occasion

Sometimes simply changing into your workout clothes will give you all the motivation you need. Now, all you have to do it get out the door.

Recreate early sunlight

Invest in a bedside lamp that simulates natural daylight and start your day with some light stretching.

Tune your alarm clock

Ditch the normal alarm clock sound you are currently using and try your iPod or similar device to play specific songs that get you going! “The rhythm is gonna get cha”!

Use a Fitness App

Check-in’s and the logging-in of workouts is super rewarding. To check it off the list and know you totally rocked today's workout is priceless! Beats the blues every time!

Now it’s your job to put on the winter armor and gear up for a great winter of workouts, new habits, and more motivation!