Stay motivated during dark winter days by committing to daily workouts
1. Plan your week ahead
If there is a favourite gym/group class you can do before or after work during the week, lock that in to your agenda. Use your weekends for longer workouts that you can do during the day or integrate with your children’s sports days or other commitments. If the kids are older and busy playing rugby, soccer or netball, use that time to go for a walk or run.
Not keen to run alone when it’s dark? Then think of joining a running group in your area – or take the initiative and set up regular training sessions with friends once a week.
2. Pack your car with a ‘takeaway gym’
“I like to pack up the Jeep with some suspension straps, a skipping rope and a yoga mat to do my resistance workout outdoors – fresh air equals a fresh perspective,” say Nikki. “Go for a long walk or run over the weekend in an unfamiliar part of your city or town – pack a fitness adventure.”
3. Include intensity and core mini sessions
Shorter, more intensive workouts on a regular basis improve your overall results and help you maintain your fitness. Even if it’s 15 minutes a day, do something that is training your body with purpose: the WakeUpWorkout(™), a few yoga poses, push-ups, etc. You’ll be surprised at the results.
4. Get some great-looking winter workout gear
>> You should feel comfortable and fabulous in your workout clothing. I’ve been reviewing compression tights lately and have found a few favourite brands that best fit my frame, and provide form and function. Invest in a great run/walk jacket that keeps off the rain but still breathes. Long compression tights are ideal for winter training, especially if you need to travel back home after a session (if you are getting the mileage up, wear them as recovery post workout from the gym or outdoors).
>> Try three-quarter length if it’s not super-cold where you are and you can use them for both indoor and outdoor sessions.
>> If you’re trail running, it pays to have shoes designed for off-road conditions and that don’t slip. Even running in parks during the winter months can have some hidden hazards, so invest in a great pair of shoes for outside training and to suit your anatomical needs.
5. Train with purpose each day
Don’t wait ‘til you have an hour free to work out, train with purpose each day and you’ll see amazing results.
Try shorter, more intensive workouts when you don’t have the time or the daylight for something longer and can’t face the gym – I call these ‘compression sessions’.
Compression Circuit Exercises
• Do 15–20 reps of each exercises – one circuit is enough but try for three sets if you have time
• Concentrate on form and technique
• Breathe – exhale on the high point of effort
• Use your core the whole time – in fact, while you are reading this, pull your belly button to your spine and bring your shoulders back
• Combine with skipping if you can’t do a walk/run warm-up
Want to lose weight? Use our handy online calculator to find out your BMI and ideal weight, then choose a workout plan.