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Staying motivated after summer

by Daniel on September 7, 2011

Staying Motivated to Stay in Shape After the Summer

With the cooler weather swiftly approaching again, now is a good time to think about your winter workout routine. If you’re not a big fan of the cold and snow, you may need a little extra motivation to leave your warm bed on a chilly morning to get moving. Just because we trade our bathing suits for big sweaters doesn’t mean we should hibernate and take and take a vacation from exercise.

You’ll be taking in just as many calories as during the summer, possibly even more with all the favorite winter comfort foods. Nobody needs an analyst or a psychology degree to understand how it’s easier to pass on exercising and settle in on the couch with a big mug of hot cocoa while you watch the snow fly, but you aren’t doing yourself any favors. If you’re not burning those calories off somehow, ultimately, packing on the pounds is inevitable.

Healthy Knows no Season

Your skin may notice the change in temperature, but everything inside your body still functions the same way regardless of the calendar. Working out can make you look great on the outside, but the most important part of regular exercise is the beneficial effect it has on your heart, lungs, and muscles.

When you exercise and fuel your body with proper nutrition, it can perform much more efficiently. Keeping in mind that exercise will help you live a longer, healthier life is sometimes the only motivation you need.

Preventative Maintenance

Much like a car or any other machine, your body needs regular maintenance to keep it running smoothly. If you’re prone to catching colds, you should consider exercise and a healthy diet as two of your best weapons to fight them off. If you run or do other exercise outdoors, getting out in the fresh air is always good for you, especially during the colder months when the windows are usually closed. Working up a sweat can help the body rid itself of toxins and carcinogens. In addition, the rise in body temperature may slow down different types of bacterial growth, making recovery processes more effective if you do come down with something. Not only will you keep colds at bay, you’ll also be reducing the likelihood of some potentially major health problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, and even cancer.

It’s Easier Mentally and Physically

The winter blues and cabin fever are other common problems many people face during the winter months. Regular exercise causes release of endorphins, which can make you feel happier and less stressed and keep depression in check.

Putting on weight over the winter is the main reason most people make New Year’s resolutions. By the time spring rolls around, they might feel the pressure with swimsuit season right around the corner. This is usually the time we shift our workouts into high gear, especially if we procrastinated for a few months.

If we instead stay motivated all winter and diligently stick with our exercise, we won’t have to make up for lost time. The vicious cycle can be broken if you keep exercise a part of your life throughout the entire year. If you have a hard time working out in the heat, autumn and winter weather could make your workout more comfortable, and getting into a yearlong exercise habit that much easier.

Try Something Fun

The change in season is also a great time to adjust your regular workout to make it more winter-friendly. There are plenty of recreational ways to stay active during the colder months. Sports such as skiing, skating, and snowboarding are some of the most popular choices. Other fun activities like sledding, building a snowman, and even a vigorous snowball fight can get your heart rate up and help you sneak in some exercise disguised as playtime.

Abandoning an exercise program just because it’s cold is never a good excuse. With the right attitude and a little willpower, anything is possible. The benefits are too many to ignore, and ultimately are the best motivation to make and maintain the commitment to exercise. If you’re the type of person that doesn’t like being cold, exercise is also a sure way to warm you up. When you’re done, you can look forward to a warm shower and a cozy sweater; but you won’t be using the sweater to hide anything.

About the Author:
Allison Gamble has been a curious student of psychology since high school. She brings her understanding of the mind to work in the weird world of internet marketing.” However, if you’d prefer to break the link, my bio is “Allison Gamble has been a curious student of psychology since high school. She brings her understanding of the mind to work in the weird world of internet marketing with psychologydegree.net.

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