Does anyone else feel like the mornings got dark really quickly this year? You are not alone if you find it hard to stay motivated as the weather changes. It's very common to exercise less frequently through winter, but we know that there is a strong link between moving our bodies and feeling good, so even though the mornings are dark and it's getting colder outside, here's how you can stay motivated and active with Han's tips:
- Move your workout indoors - If you usually like to get outside for your morning or evening exercise during the warmer months, try finding something you can do indoors and go for a walk or run at lunchtime when it's not as cool. There are so many online exercise options; try a few different ones and find something you enjoy and look forward to.
- Set up your exercise space - Most of us don't have a whole room we can allocate to exercise, so it helps to create a small space within another room that you can dedicate to movement. Lay out your mat the night before, leave your bands or foam roller there, and have some music speakers and anything else to help you get in the zone.
- Choose your workout the night before - I find that when I've already selected the workout I'm going to do, I'm much more likely to get it done. It's one less decision to make early in the morning or after a big day! You may even like to plan a week's worth of workouts in advance; many platforms (like Our Pilates) will offer weekly planners or programs you can follow along to make things nice and simple.
- Have a variety of options - Exercising indoors can get a little monotonous if we don't give ourselves enough variety. Change things up from day to day. From jump squats and lunges to an energise Pilates session or a nice stretch class, it's ideal for your body and mind to have variety in how you move, so give yourself options to keep things interesting.
- Come up with a goal or purpose - Working towards something specific really helps to pass the time in colder months. A goal will motivate you to prioritise movement and give you a sense of achievement as you hit certain milestones. A great tip is to break your big goal down into mini goals so that you can tick stages off along the way rather than losing interest halfway through.
- Be ok with change - The seasons change for a reason; different food becomes available, daylight hours change, the weather changes, and so does how we feel and what we need. When you think about it, if nature changes so much, why would we expect our bodies to stay consistent all year round? Tune into your body and change your expectations to do what feels good rather than what you think you 'should' be doing.
- Consistency is key - even 5 minutes of stretching is better than nothing because it keeps the routine going and means you are far more likely to exercise again tomorrow. It's ok if you don't feel like doing the workout you had planned, but still roll out your mat and do something small like one of Our Pilates mini classes. It doesn't really matter how long you decide to be there; it just matters that you were there.