How to stay motivated during sweater weather

large fall
Courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

It’s officially October which means I get to unpack all of my favorite sweaters. Ah, I love this change in weather!! Okay, just kidding; I actually hate the cold. My body is not a fan of anything below 70 degrees, but what I do enjoy is pulling out my fall wardrobe. I mean who doesn’t like a good cable knit sweater, some high-waisted jeans, and a pair of tall boots.

But in all honesty, my daily wardrobe in the fall can be more accurately categorized as a college bum. Once the weather starts turning chilly, my laziness hits an all-time high, and it is not good. Not only do my academic and personal responsibilities slip but any hope of staying active goes down the drain.

Losing motivation in the cold months may be common for most college students, especially since midterm season is approaching rapidly. But cold weather does not have to mean you stay inside being a couch potato until March.

It’s all about embracing the brisk temperatures and finding your fitness purpose. Seems like a simple idea, but this didn’t click with me until I read, “I Train So I Can…” by Kasey Brown, a youth and women fitness coach/ trainer. Her message is all about finding the why behind your fitness journey, and using that as your core motivation.

Maybe you train because you’re an endorphin junkie or maybe you train to be healthier, stronger, and happier. Whatever the reason is, find that and use it to your advantage. It’s all about why you do it. This journey is yours and no one else’s. You’re not doing it for anyone else but yourself, which is why you need to come up with your motivation.

I originally started my fitness journey because I was training for a half marathon, that my friend begged me to run with her. I happened to get out of it (I was very happy about this), but this didn’t stop me from continuing to stay active as much as I can. It can be very hard but there are ways to keep your motivation up as the temperatures go down.

How to stay motivated:

Find your fitness journey why. Repeat it. Believe it.

It’s very easy to come up with why you want to be more active and live a healthier lifestyle but identifying it is not enough. You really have to believe it. On those days where you’re stuck in fuzzy socks and a fleece onesie, repeating your fitness purpose will help you to get up and get active. Need an extra push? Get some friends involved and motivate each other to ditch the fuzzy socks for a few hours and get sweaty.

socks

Don’t let your favorite show stop you.

I’m awful at this. I find my new favorite show and basically live and breathe it until I’ve finished every season. Leaving a butt print on your couch should not be the only thing you accomplish during the cold months. Go for a run, go to the gym, or do a fitness class, and once you’re done I promise slouching on that couch at the end of the day will feel even more satisfying. Don’t feel like leaving your house? Clear some space and exercise in your living while you watch your show. Anyway to get active is a good way, so do what works for you.

Don’t do it alone.

You’re independent and a powerhouse but every warrior needs support. Get your friends involved in your fitness journey and make it a group effort. It is easy to fail as one person because keeping yourself accountable is hard. Your friends are there for you, just like you’re there for them, so do it together!

Don’t let the start of sweater weather keep you bundled up, get out there and live your active life.    

 

 

 

Life’s a balancing act

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courtesy of flickr creative commons

After taking about a two-month hiatus from the gym, I finally dragged my tired self to the gym, this week. Okay, more like my roommate completely ignored my strong unwillingness to go and dragged me there, but either way I went.

I was not looking forward to it at all because I knew the workout would be crap, especially since I had just downed McDonald’s before going. But once I was standing on the treadmill staring at all the TVs in front of me, I decided I might as well make the best of it. Turned out it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.

I don’t know about you, but this is a reoccurring cycle for me. I’ll have a ton of motivation; go to the gym, make it to work on time, finish assignments early, and be an overall productive person, but before you know it my motivation just disappears.

I really didn’t understand my bodies’ constant flip flop, which was very discouraging to me. Maybe deep down I’m just a lazy bum.

But then after finding How to Stay ‘Balanced’ at 28, written by blogger SENIINTHEBOX, today I realized there are other people dealing with the same frustration. I was shocked at all the similar experiences and thoughts we shared.

It dawned on me that my problem isn’t that I’m a lazy bum (okay, maybe it is a little). My problem is finding the right balance for MY life. Finding the right balance for your life is all about finding moderation in all that you do. We’ve all probably heard this before. I mean I can still vividly hear my dad saying, ‘everything in moderation’ when I was a kid, as he watched me eat 5 scoops of ice cream.

Okay, so logically that makes sense but what about those nights where you eat an entire pack of Oreo’s because it’s just one of those days. What about when you’ve spent more than half of the day stuck in your pj’s, ignoring responsibilities. Well is that okay? Some would very strongly say no but let me tell you it’s normal and it’s human.

Being a hardcore perfectionist makes living in moderation a hard concept for me to grasp, but I realized to succeed you need to be forgiving towards yourself. Don’t throw in the towel just because you ate the entire bag of chips instead of the 5 you promised you’d eat. Or because you ate an entire box of Fractured Prune donuts like I did at the beach this past summer (I later regretted this decision).

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Don’t let it stop you. Life is all one big balancing act so don’t panic if you slip up a little bit. Being able to find YOUR own flexibility is what it’s all about.

Sticking to a strict diet or exercise regime might work for others but for me it usually ends in failure. I know once I start being more forgiving towards myself in all aspects of my life and find the right balance, that I’ll be able succeed MY way.

Find what works for you. If you have any ideas for how to stay motivated or how you’ve succeeded in living a balanced life, I’d love to hear them! Feel free to share them in the comments below.

 

balance. flexibility. moderation.