Eight Ways to Power through your Winter Workout Slump

Firing yourself up to exercise during the dreary, sunless winter months is challenging. Why throw a tank top on and grind through a workout when you can cuddle up under a warm, fuzzy blanket?  

As appealing as option number two may sound, when the alternative to activity is staying stationary and risking weight gain and potential health issues, you’ve got to find a way to get motivated.  

If you’re sensing a winter slump, give these physical and mental tips a try this season:  

Take Advantage of Energetic Hours 

Are you a morning person? Do you feel a jolt of energy when your workday ends? Or are you a night owl that gets a second wind when the sun goes down in the early evening?  

Recognize the time of day in which you feel the most energy and harness it this winter by dedicating that window of time to exercise.  

Organize Gear and Equipment the Night Before 

The winter workout struggle is a mostly mental war. Once you’re in the middle of your workout routine it’s easy; it’s getting to the workout that’s hard.  

So, make a habit of actualizing the workout before it happens by laying out your workout clothes, shoes, water bottle and any other gear you use the night before. Now you’re one step closer to the workout.  

Set Goals and Make a Calendar 

Set some short-term goals this winter and stick to them. Whether it’s a physical goal like dropping 10 pounds by the first day of spring or it’s mental-based, like setting out to de-stress four or five times a week, make a weekly planner to track your progress.  

Jotting down workouts ahead of time in a calendar could also help you treat them like appointments you cannot skip.  

Make a Playlist 

Sometimes getting the most out of a workout is rooted in the music blaring out of your headphones.  

Playing the same playlist for weeks on end can leave you disengaged, so try putting together a new playlist to get you excited about your next workout.  

Try Class Settings 

It’s tough not to be inspired by an energetic class leader and a whole group of people exercising around you, whether that be in-person or virtually.  

Class workouts also give you a sense of community, which in turn could give you extra incentive to return to class and share progress with the group.  

Blue365 offers Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM) members 30% off select live at-home yoga, fitness, and meditation classes. Click here to view offers. 

Buddy Up 

When you and a friend hold each other accountable, it’s easier to stay motivated and harder to nix workouts here and there.    

If you’re not the world’s greatest self-starter, try finding a friend that also wants to stay fit this winter so you can lean on each other.  

Hire an In-Person or Virtual Trainer 

Working with a virtual trainer is mostly a combination of the top two tips. Though it’ll cost you, hiring a good trainer that helps you strategize, stay on task and stay motivated can’t be understated. You’ll also benefit from a professional who preaches proper physical form.   

Blue365 offers $50 to $100 in-person and virtual personal training sessions to BCBSM members.  

Envision the Result  

This mental tip can be applied to both short-term and long-term thinking. If you just got off work, it’s cold and dead outside and you’re low on motivation, think about how fulfilled and productive you’ll feel if you crank out an hour-long workout as opposed to how you’ll feel by skipping it.  

Think ahead to how you’ll feel physically, mentally, and emotionally after knocking out a workout, showering and changing out of your workout clothes. Then remember that feeling of satisfaction the next time you’re struggling with motivation.  


Photo credit: Getty Images

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