8 Ways to Stay Motivated
Healthy Living

8 Ways to Stay Motivated to Exercise Through Winter

“Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful…”

It’s that time of year again—cold winds, comfy sweaters, and peppermint coffee drinks at the local cafe. While this is all wonderful, it makes our couch seem much more appealing and trekking outside for a run or workout much more of a chore. So how do we get ourselves motivated to continue exercising and staying active? Here are 8 tips to get you up and running (no pun intended):

  1. Find a workout buddy- Recruit one (or more!) of your friends to exercise with you. Not only will you have more fun, but you will also be more driven to go to the gym knowing someone is relying on you to be there.

  2. Refresh your playlist- Listening to different tunes adds novelty to your workout, preventing you from becoming bored and uninspired. When picking out new songs for your playlist look for ones with 125-140 bpm. Researchers from London’s Brunel University School of Sport and Research have found that tempo to be best for increasing motivation and decreasing sense of exertion.

  3. Keep yourself warm- Cold environments make curling up under a cozy blanket and staying sedentary very tempting. Turn up your thermostat and preheat your workout clothing to create less of a motivation for yourself to stay in bed/on the couch.

  4. Embrace the season- Rather than focusing on the negative effects of winter on your workout, focus on the positives. Now that there is snow, it is the perfect time to try skiing or snowboarding. If the slopes are too far away, ice skating rinks are a great option as well. Focus on the beauty of the season and the new opportunities it presents.

  5. Invest in new workout apparel- With the temperature steadily dropping, you may need longer/thicker workout apparel. Choose something that you like and will feel great wearing. Knowing that you have new and flattering clothes will make you more motivated to wear them and get moving!

  6. Set mini-goals- While your main goal for working out may be a big one (losing weight, staying healthy, training for a marathon), it is important to break up that goal into small, manageable steps. Write down your goals, making them as specific as possible, and keep track of your progress. The end goal may seem daunting or even impossible some days, leading you to skip a workout altogether. Smaller goals will feel easier and more doable, even on those days you are feeling especially unmotivated. It’s about consistency and progress!

  7. Reward yourself- Sticking to a new workout schedule or persistently working toward your fitness goals can be hard! To keep up your motivation (and spirits), reward yourself for your achievements. Plan a movie night with friends after having met all of your weekly goals, or treat yourself to a mani/pedi. Knowing that there is a treat to look forward to will make it that much easier to accomplish your goals. For more ideas on rewarding yourself, click here.

  8. Create an at-home workout- Sometimes going to the gym or outside for a run will not be possible. Maybe the roads are snowed in, your car is in the shop, or you are short on time. To keep your fitness routine going even on those days, create an at-home workout. Invest in some home equipment or exercise DVD’s, or find some videos online. Another great option is dancing or playing sports games using a gaming console with a sensor (such as the Nintendo Wii or Xbox Kinect). This is great for anyone looking for a  more interactive workout at home.


Experiment with these ideas and see what works best for you. Remember to have fun and keep going!

Share your winter fitness experiences with us on Twiiter @yogatailor and in the comments below.


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