It’s the after the holidays. We know how comfortable that couch can be, especially after overindulging and filling your days with food-and-drink comas. They say it takes 21 days to create a new habit. After the month of December, most of us need a new routine.
Before you know it, it will be bikini beach season. Yikes!
While winter workouts can be hard, here are some ways to get your butt in gear.
1. Try a new workout app, video. (Or do a DVD swap with friends.)
7-minute work. The New York Times offers its own free app and video based on its Phys Ed columnist Gretchen Reynolds, which also a more advanced version, too.
Hot5Fitness. This app offers a variety of step-by-step workout video geared towards different workout levels.
- Daily Yoga. This free app for Android and iPhones offers yoga for your entire body.
2. Find a fitness friend. The buddy system works for a reason.
If you have someone who can hold you accountable, be it in work or life, you’re more likely to accomplish great things. Ask someone in your friend network to text you to get your a$$ to the gym. You’ll be happy later. That’s because a University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine two-year study of 344 men and women found having a partner improved weight-loss results.
Need to find a workout buddy? Fitness magazine recommends looking at:
Another option is WellSquad, an app the Miami Observer calls the OkCupid option for finding the right kind of workout partner for you. Or try Cody, a Facebook-like fitness community that connects users to other people who are working out and coaches.
3. Signup for a group class.
It may seem like a no-brainer, but look for group workout deals on sites like LivingSocial and Groupon. Try something new to get excited.
Many cities also offer workout class for a nominal fee through their parks and recreation departments.
4. Find something you enjoy and change things up.
If you’re not working out, it might be because you haven’t liked what you’ve already tried. If you hate the activity you’re doing and it causes you to not workout, then it’s time to find something else. Or try to find the winter version of outdoor summer activities that you enjoy.
If you love to bike outside, consider getting an indoor trainer so you can keep cycling at home during the winter. If you love to swim, find a gym with an indoor pool. Or if you have back pain, consider doing vinyasa yoga, a slow and gentle style of yoga where you flow through the poses.
Men’s Fitness also suggests doing this to avoid the winter workout rut:
- Buy new gear.
- Embrace the cold.
- Take things slow and steady.
- Set a big goal, because training for something is easier than just working out.
- Overhaul your diet.
- Find a new playlist
5. Track your workouts and more.
Just like keeping a food diary, a fitness diary will help you track how often you are working out. Just because you THINK you are working out a lot, doesn’t mean you are really hitting the gym enough.
Here are a few free apps to get you started:
- MyFitnessPal – PC magazine calls this free app, “one of the best all-in-one calorie counter and exercise trackers for the iPhone.”
- This app works as pedometer to track your steps and calculates the calories you have burned. (10,000 is the daily goal.)
- Lose It. Use a barcode scanner to track the foods you are eating and the calorie intake. Forbes columnist Jennifer Cohen says, “think of it as having a personal trainer and nutritionists at your disposal at all times."
Need more motivation? Check out these mantras to keep your heart racing.