Winter is now approaching and some of you may be feeling the weight of that colder weather already. Summer was great; you’d wake up early feeling all hyped and full of energy, most enjoying that morning jog or those warm nights were perfect for a late night work out session. Now that the weather is getting colder though, you’ll start finding that you’d much rather just stay cosied up in your warm bed instead.
So how can you get around this change? Most of us don’t want to completely do away with your health and fitness goals, but with the sliding motivation you’re experiencing, you may wonder if you’ll ever actually keep yourself going.
If you put a few smart motivational strategies into place, there’s no question you can keep yourself moving along. So here are a few points to consider.
Get a Workout Buddy
The first thing to consider is getting a workout buddy. Having a workout partner can go a long way to inspire you to keep showing up for your scheduled fitness sessions time and time again. When you know that someone is counting on you to come to the gym or showing up at regular exercise session, you’re less likely to skip it.
Keep in mind though, for the best results it is always preferable to find a workout buddy who is at the same fitness level as you, has a similar fitness schedule and has the same general workout preferences.
Change Your Goals
To really inspire you and get you motivated, consider changing your goals. Sometimes a change of pace is all you need to get yourself motivated again and keep to your exercise schedule. For e.g. if you’ve been working out regularly trying to burn fat, consider switching gears and focusing on muscle building instead.
In fact, colder weather or not, it’s always a good idea to periodise your fitness program on a regular basis. This little effort goes a long way to keep you motivated and to help ensure that things aren’t getting too stale, allowing your progress to move along nicely.
Sign Up for an Event
If you really need an extra dose of motivation, consider signing up for an event. Doing a half marathon for instance if you are a runner is a fantastic way to get yourself committed to doing those workouts. Nothing keeps you focused quite like having a firm deadline you need to hit.
Not interested in a marathon event? You might consider simply doing a challenge with a friend instead, or maybe hitting up some social media groups to find people of a similar mindset that are organizing community challenges.
Keep Yourself Accountable
Keeping yourself accountable is also critical to staying in the game. You might want to consider getting an accountability buddy to help out with this. Have them check in with you every so often and see how you’re doing.
Are you eating what you should be? Are you hitting the gym? How is your progress going? Get them to ask you these questions. Knowing you have to report to someone may make you think twice about skipping those workouts or venturing too far off your health program.
Use a Reward System
A reward system can also be a terrific tool to help keep you going when times get hard. Set some rewards that go along with the amount of effort that you have to put in to achieve success.
For instance, if you lose 2 kilos, your reward isn’t going to be as great as if you lost 6 or 8 kilos.
Think hard about your rewards and make sure that they are something worth working towards. Whatever you choose, just make sure you don’t give yourself the reward until you’ve accomplished the goal. Too many people give in and just give themselves the reward anyway, which entirely derails the purpose.
If you have to, use an accountability buddy here as well. Have them give you the reward once you’ve achieved success.
Take Progress Pictures
Progress pictures are also important for keeping yourself accountable, so it’s a great bandwagon to jump on. It’s easy to snap a few pictures when you first begin and then one every two weeks or so as you move along. Don’t get too carried away though, taking photos daily won’t show changes…plus, it can be quite narcissistic and bad for emotional health. A two-week interval though can definitely show any small changes taking place.
To get the most out of this tip, try and take your progress pictures at the same time every day, wearing the same clothing and in the same room with the same lighting. Lighting can make a big difference in how you look, so you’ll want to ensure that you are keeping that constant.
Get Social Support
Finally, get some social support. Tell others around you about the goals you are working towards and get them to support you and possibly even join in.
The more social support you can get the better – as long as it’s genuine. Those who have others there for them during the hard times are far more likely to stick with the program and come through to see success rather than those who don’t.
Whether its family, friends, co-workers or those online, try and get at least a few people you can go to when you’re struggling.
If you keep these tips in mind, you should be able to sustain your motivation and go on to see great results this coming winter season. It will take a bit of work and effort on your part, but it’ll be well worth it when those results start showing.
...and remember, qualified nutritionists at Healthy Being are available to offer further general advice to help guide you in selecting the right products. So please, feel free to contact us at any time!
Shannon Clark is a qualified nutritionist and a regular contributor to Healthy Being Insights. She specialises in weight control and management as well as optimal fitness performance. She's devoted to helping readers obtain their own personal best health and fitness and stays on top the latest trends in the industry.