Find your flow (and your bliss) with tips from a goal coach.
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The winter season is here. With dropped temperatures and a 4:30pm sunset, the thought of working out can be far from your mind. Why? Because curling up on the couch with a cup of hot chocolate sounds like the best treat!
While I would never tell you to turn down a yummy cup of hot chocolate, I want to make sure the cold weather doesn’t stop you from getting up and moving. Here are four ways you can stay motivated to work out during the winter season.
Let's be real - it’s easier to stay on track when you've got your eyes on the prize. Consider signing yourself up for a spring half marathon, charity run, or a fun fitness event like a Spartan Race or Tough Mudder. Aim to challenge yourself to do a certain number of push-ups or pull-ups by the end of the winter. Goals like these require preparation and commitment and will give you a reason to workout. I would encourage you to break down your big goal into mini goals that you can tick off week by week to keep yourself motivated and a step closer to your big goal!
One of the fastest ways to lose motivation to work out in the winter is boredom. If you’ve been doing the same type of workout every day for months and haven’t been getting as excited about it, switch things up. Keep your body guessing! Have you ever taken a Pilates class? How about HIIT? When was the last time you swam laps in an indoor pool? Use the winter season as a time to experiment with new classes or activities you haven’t tried before. I personally aim to try a new class once a week. The MINDBODY app makes it easy for me to explore new classes without committing to a monthly membership.
If you’re going to work out in the morning, set your clothes out the night before so that you don’t have to do any thinking when you wake up. You won’t have as many excuses if you’re all packed and ready to go first thing in the morning. Not a morning person? That’s alright! Pack everything you need for a lunch or evening workout. Schedule it like you would a work meeting or drinks with friends—you wouldn’t bail on them, so don’t bail on yourself!
Getting off the couch to work out in the winter (or any time for that matter) is much easier when you have a friend by your side. By scheduling an outdoor run, gym time, or fitness classes throughout the week, you and your workout buddy will hold each other accountable. No one wants to be a no-show when their buddy is depending on them!
Searching for fitness motivation? Follow Ariel at @gymhooky for healthy recipes, workouts, and lifestyle tips!
When you think of self-love what do you think of? Bubble baths, walks on the beach, facemasks, or what? Self-love can mean so many different things but when we think about self-love, we have to acknowledge loving ourselves both on the outside and on the inside. The way that we show ourselves love is one of the most important things we will ever do.
How do we treat ourselves? How do we talk to ourselves? What foods are we putting into our bodies? How are we thinking about our overall well-being when practicing self-love?
As self-love defines and redefined itself for you over the years, here are a few foundational tips to think about when easing into your self-love journey.
Don’t we love this one? Loving ourselves has a lot to do with the boundaries that we have for ourselves, with others, and for others. Take time to think about your own emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual needs when setting boundaries that reflect your personal needs. Boundaries don’t have to be big and scary; they are here to remind us that you get to have your lived experience and still have expectations about how you’d like to be treated and what you’d like to feel.
When thinking about your boundaries, ask yourself:
In a world where perfectionism and curated existences have been rewarded, begin to cultivate compassion for yourself. You are a soul having a human experience and it’s totally okay if things are not perfect.
Mindfulness exercises such as Breathwork, self-care activities, and self-compassion, all help train the mind, emotions, and even the body’s stress chemicals to be able to deal with undesired situations. Self-compassion means, can you be nice to yourself? Can you find empathy and kindness for yourself in the middle of what feels chaotic, stressful, or unwanted? Self-compassion means that we get to make mistakes, have our plans not work out the way that we wanted, and we still get to celebrate that we are doing the best that we can and it is enough.
When thinking about self-compassion, ask yourself:
In every sense of the word “nourishment”, begin to learn what nourishes you and what depletes you. Nourishment doesn’t just mean food for yourself; it means that whatever you are consuming whether it be media, podcasts, people, energy, information, etc. all impact the way that we think, feel, and experience life.
Nourishing yourself definitely goes right along the lines of having your boundaries intact and practicing self-compassion.
When thinking about nourishment, ask yourself:
That’s it. Those are the foundational steps to cultivating a self-love practice that you can ease into your daily routine. Come back to these questions often, because like anything else, self-love is a practice and it takes effort, time, and intention to maintain.