Motivating to Fitness Activities During Winter


In The Guardian, Sirin Kale has an interesting and inspiring article on getting back to lost fitness and motivation. Those of us who live in Minnesota, we know how brutal our never-ending long winter seasons could be. Through, outside recreational activities are plenty here – however daily fitness activities like walking is outside is near impossible except indoor walking in shopping malls.

Sirin has following advise for motivating ourselves to to fitness exercises:

  • Don’t be ashamed. ” … other people don’t care. They’re doing their own thing. I find that if people can just get in for one or two weeks, they soon change their perception of the gym space, and themselves within the gym space. They just need to get in in the first place,” says personal trainer Joe Edmonds.
  • Find your personal incentive. “I would try to encourage that person to find another reason for them to exercise. For me a huge motivation to continue training and get healthier isn’t aesthetics, but because of my son. I like to remind clients that there are people who rely on them and they need them to be strong. If you can’t exercise for yourself, do it for the people who rely on you to be healthy,” says Zahir Akram, personal trainer and founder of Akram Yoga Studio in Addlestone, Surrey.
  • Don’t overdo it. “When I work with clients who are getting back into things, I tell them not to go from doing nothing to being Jet from Gladiator by the end of the week. I know it’s super-tempting when you are in a down phase to amp it up to the max, but it’s not realistic,” says the London-based personal trainer Hannah Lewin.
  • Identify something you enjoy. “If you start with something you really dislike, it won’t help you get back into anything. Finding something you don’t hate is a good place to start, and it will also help build your confidence level. Confidence and motivation go hand in hand, so if you are finding something makes you feel bad, exercise will be even more stressful, and your motivation will decline even further,” says Lewin.
  • Don’t obsess about the gym. “You don’t have to think of exercise as going to the gym or for a 5km run. Just going for a 15-minute walk every day will contribute to health, make your joints feel better, and loosen you up. Lots of people have a mistaken idea of what exercise is. If you go walking regularly, that’s exercise. So if you don’t want to go to a gym, at least get up and move around more,” says Akram.
  • Consider measuring your progress. “Incremental gains can be really motivating. A lot of people are numbers-based and being able to write down and see their progress and logging it can be very beneficial for them. Others will be motivated by training with someone else. You have to understand what motivates you,” says Edmonds.
  • Use the resources that are available. “Most of the bigger gyms are doing free back-to-the-gym personal training sessions. You’ll get 45 minutes for free with a personal trainer. Even if you’re a seasoned gym-goer, it’s really worth it, as it will give you a bit of fire for trying something new,” says Lewin.
  • Be consistent – and kind to yourself. “The more consistent you are, the higher your motivation levels will stay. But consistency needs you to be realistic. Otherwise, it gets overwhelming,” says Lewin.

The above quotes were adopted from Sirin Kale’s article in verbatim.