It’s cold. We don’t need to tell you that of course as the temperatures have dropped below freezing.
With the dark mornings and evenings and the icy weather thrown in, it certainly makes it harder to get motivated to stay fit.
But as we all know the benefits of exercise are endless, not only physically but for mental health too, which is especially important during winter.
There are things you can do to help keep up your motivation for working out.
Make a plan
Making a training plan for the next few months as it will allow you to realistically judge how much time you’ll have and work in your training accordingly.
If you normally go for a run but know that freezing weather will put you off, make alternative arrangements for those days. Knowing that you can head to a gym or have a home work-out planned, means you’re prepared for those days.
Keep warm on work-outs
Ensuring you have the right gear for outdoor training is vital.
Yes you’ll soon get warm when you start exercising but starting off well is a good way to go.
Don’t forget the basics, such as a pair of gloves, a hat and a scarf. Warm leggings or joggers and snuggly base layers will stop you shivering. You can then remove items along the way if you get too hot.
Having a warm drink on hand in a flask is good for post work-out too.
A warm drink is useful and drinking plenty of water is vital.
It can be easy to forget about hydration when the temperatures drop but with the extra layers in cold weather it could mean sweating more.
Make sure that water bottle is full and that you drink at regular intervals.
Sleep is key to a healthy lifestyle and can even help your metabolism.
Going to bed earlier will certainly help you continue the morning motivation for getting up and exercising.
And it will also provide the energy you need to complete your regime.
Being too tired for exercise is a slippery slope. Put yourself in the best frame of mind and make sure you’re well rested.
Look after your muscles
The potential for injuries is real if you don’t allow yourself to recover properly.
Remember to stretch and warm up properly and then do a proper warm-down afterwards.
There are a number of protein drinks and supplements too to further aid muscle recovery post work-out.
It goes without saying that a good diet is important regardless of the time of year.
A wide variety of fruit and veg will give you a boost of energy, as well as providing all the important vitamins and minerals.
Vitamin C also has benefits for during and after physical exercise, while taking extra Vitamin D is worth considering. With less sun in winter we don’t naturally get as much of it so a supplement is ideal.