Staying fit during winter

December arrives with a plethora of christmas parties, festive nights out and good old catch ups. Personally I enjoy having lots of festive fun, but with a jam-packed schedule it can be difficult to stay on top of fitness.

During the winter your body produces more fat storing chemicals (ATLPL to be precise) and you crave more comfort food (serotonin levels drop which leave us more tired and hungry) basically serving us a double whammy. Exercise offsets both of these hormones which makes it even more essential to stay active during the cold and wet winter months. Beyond obvious physical health benefits, exercise boosts your mood, reduces stress levels and decreases your risk of depression. All of which are prone to suffer the most as the nights draw in and the mornings become increasingly darker.

This got me thinking about little ways to change things up a bit and stay fit during winter; since I definitely do not want to turn into the stuffed turkey…

Motivation.   

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  • Dark mornings and nights play havoc on energy levels so it’s natural to feel a dip in motivation at this time of year. The last thing you want to do is get up extra early to exercise but don’t fall into the trap of excuses
  • Read about my ways to boost your energy levels and my tips to eat healthily during the festive period
  • Action comes first and motivation follows. If you wait to feel motivated, it’ll never happen.  Build those good behaviours day by day and before you know it habit takes over

Be prepared.

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  • Schedule.. your week ahead by making exercise plans in your diary. It helps you stay accountable. Aim to get in some form of activity most days, whether that’s a gym class, walk on your lunch break or taking the stairs
  • Pack up and go.. Early morning gym session? Lay your gym kit out and have your bag packed. The last thing you want to do in the morning is spend time searching for something to wear
  • Fuel up.. Keep water next to your bed and drink first thing to wake you up. If you’re struggling, grab a coffee or quick snack for some energy. A banana, handful of nuts or raisins will give you that quick burst
  • Jump out of bed.. 20 minutes spent deliberating about getting up? Those could be spent going for a quick run, getting to the gym or working out at home. Having done a quick 30 minutes of exercise, be showered and dressed before 9am? Now that will certainly put you in a good mood for the day

Banish the excuses.

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  • Sign up to classes.. 
  • Grab a friend or gym buddy.. make plans with others and it’ll make you more accountable. You can catch up, make your workout fun and feel good after
  • Too dark and cold out? Work out at home. 30 minutes and your body weight is all you need
  • Busy day? Use time creatively and make sight adjustments to the day. Go for a walk on your lunch break, take the stairs, get off the bus at an earlier stop, walk/cycle to work
  • Make your social plans active.. go for walks, bike ride, a yoga class, ice skating, indoor trampolining, whatever takes your fancy

Winter proof your workout.

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  • Try a new activity, sport or class… avoid becoming stagnate by changing things up 
  • Embrace the cold.. by trying a winter activity. Get outdoors, countryside walks, ice skating, skiing, snowboarding, sledging…
  • Invest in new workout gear.. nothing says new motivation like a new piece of kit. Get the right gear and layer up. Once you start moving you’ll warm up
  • Workout at home.. if you can not face going outside. With a plethora of YouTube videos and workout apps you can do almost anything from the comfort of your living room
  • Motivation.. update your playlist and grab a friend to up your motivation

For more tips for health and wellness over winter check out my other posts:

Essential nutrients to boost energy levels

Tips to eat healthily during the festive period

‘Healthy food’ mistakes you need to stop

Let me know if you would like any specific workout or nutrition tips

Good luck!

L x

 

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September Summary

Well September has flown by and thought I would round-up the things I’ve been loving this month.

Designing clothes!

I’ve been getting creative designing clothes this month. I’m lucky that my mum is an insanely talented dress-maker (amongst other things) and has that amazing ability to take my drawings and make them into a clothing reality. I feel really proud wearing her work. She loves receiving compliments on clothing she’s created and loves the feeling of having something totally unique. Take her to a fabric store and she’s in heaven. I don’t consider myself to be creative at all, I want things that technically don’t work and don’t understand pattern making or the general idea construction of clothes, but I LOVE FASHION. I get a picture in my head of the type of clothing I like, go to a fabric store and go wild.

This month I’ve designed a few items. We visited a few fabric stores and got pretty creative this month. I am in love with my playsuit below – it has a lace trim around the sleeves, neckline and bottom of the shorts.

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I fell in love with this autumnal chiffon fabric 

TV shows and Podcasts

I typically do not watch much TV. I’m that annoying person that just cannot keep up to date with a series and I get put off starting a Netflix show when there are just too many seasons to catch up on. i.e. more than one. I think I’m on episode one of SO many shows – Narcos, Designated Survivor, American Gods, etc. But this month I have finally watched some TV! I caught up on Suits, which i’ve really loved. I need a Lewis in my life. I also finished Pretty Little Liars, which the latter seasons did not keep my interest and I felt that the ending was just too far-fetched. Still, I’d committed for 6 seasons so I was always going to finish it at some point! I’ve also been good at keeping up with new shows – Bake off, Cold Feet and Liar. AND I’m loving all three in equal measures.

 

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I’ve been getting back into podcasts recently. I’ve found myself on transport a lot and I’ve quite enjoyed listening to podcasts and reading my kindle. The three podcasts that spring to mind are: Trish Blackwell’s confidence podcast series ( a recent find!), Happier with Gretchen Ruebin and Motivate Yourself with Richard Nichols. Yep. There’s a self-development theme here! As far as books go, I’ve downloaded about 10 (!) and have just finished two: the latest Lindsay Kelk instalment in the I heart series; I heart forever, and Hot Mess by Lucy Vine. Definitely recommend for some easy-going, light-hearted LOLs.

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Cooking!

I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen and have enjoyed creating new recipes. I’m a terrible baker, but I LOVE cooking. Cooking with and for other people especially. I was in Spain and spent time with my mum cooking Spanish food. A bit different for me as I tend to gravitate towards more Asian food. The food was just so fresh and amazing! OH MY GOD padron peppers! There was just something really refreshing about taking spice out of the equation and making really fresh food with simple ingredients, like garlic, olive oil and oregano. I also learned how to cook a traditional paella. Not to brag but it was AMAZING.

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❤ 

What have you enjoyed this month?

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