As I write this the view outside is dull, foggy, cold and frankly quite uninviting!
Living in the Northern Hemisphere means we are subject to months when we don’t see much sunshine and the temperatures plummet. It can make getting off the sofa to do some exercise feel like really hard work.
So how do we keep our motivation going to exercise when the days are short, and the skies are grey?
- Make your goal super exciting to you. Your goal needs to be overwhelmingly important to you so that you are excited to be working towards it. I call it keeping your eyes on the prize mentality. There is an NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) technique to help with this. Visualise yourself when you have achieved the goal and then “step into” the vision. Imagine how you look, what you might be saying to yourself, what are the sights, sounds, smells and feelings in that picture? Hopefully you will have excitement at that picture making it compelling to achieve.
- Exercise with friends. Making a fitness date with a pal can be helpful when you don’t want to venture out into the cold. It can make you feel accountable and more likely to keep the appointment.
- Wrap up! This not only applies to those who train outside in the winter months! Layers that you can shed when you get to the gym are vital to keep you warm prior to the warmup of the workout but also to protect your core temp post exercise when you can cool down rapidly. Bright colours not only keep you visible on dark winter days but also bring cheery colours to dull days!
- Treat yourself. Make a promise to yourself that for every week you complete your training schedule you can treat yourself to a reward (healthy of course!). It could be a post workout sports massage, a posh shower gel or even something simple like giving yourself time to read a book!
- Work with a PT or coach. If you are still finding it difficult to keep your training though the Winter, it could be a great idea to invest in time with a fitness professional – even if its for a few sessions only. That investment may mean the difference in actually reaching that goal or starting at square one again when the clocks go forward in the Spring.