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For the residents of the Northern Hemisphere, winter has arrived. Days are shorter, the trees are saying farewell to their leaves, and the weather for wearing shorts is over for all but the hardy few.
The change in season also changes habits from outdoors to indoors, with our bodies keen to stockpile food and take on fat for the colder months.
These factors challenge our motivation, and the fitness versus hibernation struggle becomes real. The options for outside exercises become fewer and less appealing, and the dark, wet walk to a busy gym is less than desirable.
In this blog, we will look at what we can do to stay motivated.
Before we look at what we can do, let's examine why winter causes a drop in motivation.
Cold temperatures and reduced daylight hours can disrupt the body's circadian rhythm and negatively impact mood, reducing the desire to engage in physical activity.
Lower exposure to natural light can lead to lower levels of vitamin D, serotonin and dopamine, affecting motivation and overall well-being.
Dressing in multiple layers and braving the harsh weather conditions can act as deterrents to leaving the house, as the body perceives these obstacles to the goals.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) can further exacerbate these issues, with symptoms of depression often diminishing motivation to exercise.
The psychological aspect of motivation can also be influenced by the perception that it's harder to exercise during the winter. Negative thoughts about the weather and the effort required may discourage people from starting or maintaining a workout routine.
Some individuals may experience reduced energy levels in the winter due to factors like lower vitamin D levels, inadequate sleep, or a lack of physical activity. This can lead to decreased motivation to exercise.
During the winter months, reduced exposure to natural sunlight can lead to lower vitamin D synthesis in the skin. Vitamin D is a crucial hormone that plays a significant role in various physiological functions, including bone health, motivation, immune system regulation, and overall well-being.
Consume foods rich in vitamin D, such as fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, trout), egg yolks, and fortified foods like dairy products, orange juice, and cereals. These all can contribute to your daily vitamin D intake.
Whenever possible, try to get outdoors during daylight hours, even in winter. Exposing your skin to natural sunlight is the most effective way to boost vitamin D levels. Aim for at least 15-20 minutes of sun exposure on your face, arms, and hands without sunscreen, preferably during midday when UVB rays are strongest.
If you feel good and healthy, you are more likely to maintain your motivation to work out and stay fit.
Setting a fitness goal or challenge for the summer is a strategic move that can significantly boost motivation during the winter months. With the promise of warm weather, outdoor activities, and the desire to look and feel amazing in your beach wear, having a concrete goal serves as a powerful incentive.
This long-term plan creates a sense of purpose, providing something to work towards, especially when outdoor exercise may be less appealing due to cold and inclement weather. It offers a beacon of motivation, helping individuals stay on track with their fitness routines and overcome the winter blues.
A summer fitness goal will help establish a structured plan, ensuring that you remain consistent with your workouts and nutrition throughout the winter.
Focusing on home workouts during the winter offers several advantages. First and foremost, the cold and inclement weather can be a significant deterrent to outdoor exercise, making home workouts a convenient and accessible option.
By eliminating the need to brave unpleasant weather conditions or travel to a gym, you are more likely to maintain a consistent fitness routine throughout the winter months, ensuring that your health and well-being don't take a seasonal hiatus.
Home workouts provide flexibility in terms of timing and personalization. With a quality home gym, you can choose exercises and routines that align with your fitness goals and preferences.
Home gyms like PIVOT offer flexibility, allow for efficient time management and ensure that workouts can easily fit into busy winter schedules, fostering a sense of control and empowerment over your health.
PIVOT gives you two rooms in one, with its unique gym that folds into a bed. Or a Bed that folds into a Gym, depending on your perspective.
Our high-quality rack can help you maintain your motivation to work out by transforming your spare room or bedroom into a gym in seconds without you having to leave your home.
PIVOT is perfect for strength and resistance training, and once you are done exercising, you can pivot back to hibernation mode.