Is anyone else struggling to find energy and motivation on these dark, gloomy winter days? If your answer is yes, don’t worry I am right there with you. It is amazing to me how quickly I noticed the effects of less sunlight. I find myself feeling more tired, sluggish, and just wanting to curl up in a blanket to avoid the cold. The good news is this “winter blues” feeling can be easily fought with one common solution… Exercise!
I could go on and on with a list of the many benefits of exercise. Most of us know exercise is good for us, but sometimes it’s just a matter of actually doing it. So if you are looking for ways to get re-energized, beat those “winter blues,” or for motivation to start exercising; please join me as I take on applying some new tips and tricks to my lifestyle. And we’re going to start right now!
Let’s begin by setting a goal or a few goals. Make sure they are realistic, attainable goals. You may find it helpful to have a couple of smaller, short term goals and one more challenging, long term goal. Find a picture that represents your goal and hang it on your refrigerator as a daily reminder of what you are striving toward. Then, take off with a great start to your goals. No person, thing, or goal will motivate you if you are not set with your goals and willing to work. Don’t wait for motivation to kick in, just get out there and do it. Make exercise part of your schedule. Put it on your calendar and treat it like any other appointment. This is your time for YOU!
Now, when things are going well—you’re exercising, made strides toward your goals, and feeling great—don’t let excuses take over. Excuses are always readily available and at times we may not even be able to identify them as excuses. Be smarter than your excuses! Have your gym bag ready to go and with you no matter what—there is one excuse out of the way. Be aware of the temptation of excuses and don’t allow yourself to give in; stay on track to success!
Enlist Expert Help
If you find yourself struggling to meet your expectations for your goals, try working with a personal trainer. It will be worth your time and money to get back on track or stay on track. This is an investment in yourself and your health that you will benefit from instantly and for years to come. Personal trainers are masters of motivation and have the knowledge to challenge you in ways that you may not know you could be challenged. If cost is still deterring you, talk to a trainer about small group training. It is very likely they know of others interested in group training and together you can get a few friends or club members into a training group that is challenging, social, and less expensive.
Focus on Benefits
Lastly, I encourage you to keep your focus on the benefits of exercise that you value most. Maybe you find exercise an important source of energy (especially during the long winter season), or find it helpful in managing stress, or simply enjoy its health benefits. Brainstorm ideas of the value you find in exercise and the ways it adds to your quality of life. Write these down and post them on your refrigerator next to your motivation picture.
Stay healthy and strong this winter and hopefully those “winter blues” will stay away!Get Started! Tell us about your goals!
By Lauren Kaderabek, Fitness Specialist & Personal Trainer at Elite Sports Clubs – West Brookfield