Aug 3, 2016

Nix those winter demotivators

We’re smack bang in the middle of the chilly season – and our motivation is fading… Try these tips from personal trainer and nutritionist Michael Hermann to boost your willpower and enhance your fitness:

Gear up: If you’re cold, you will naturally feel more lethargic and less motivated to workout. Get some new winter workout gear that look fab and feel comfy too – essentials include winter compression tights, running jacket that keeps you warm but still breathes and training socks that don’t leave your shoes full of sweat and bad blisters.

Eat for the season:
Nutrition is powerful at raising core temperature. Drop summer salads and warm yourself up with slow cooked meals, stir fries, and homemade soups – the big ingredient you want to include in all of these is lean protein as it increases the thermic effect of feeding (TEF) and raises core temperature significantly compared to carbs and fat.

Tweak your training:
While summer might have seen you sweating it out in the sunshine or taking runs after work, these workouts aren’t going to cut it in winter. Try training in the afternoon, inside a warm and bright gym with weights and friends. If you want to get in and out quickly, throw out the bicep curls and isolated exercises and go for the bigger whole-body movements that are more metabolic such as squats, presses, deadlifts, rows and lunges. Higher intensity training not only gets the blood pumping more but expends a lot of calories both during exercise and up to 48 hours after through a raised metabolic rate, making it the perfect way to train in winter.

Get your R&R:
It’s okay to take things down a notch and give your body a chance for extra recovery. If an early morning workout is your goal, make sure you allow adequate rest. When you finish a workout, relax in a salt bath after training as opposed to showering – this is another method that keeps you warm but also helps with muscle repair. Finally, spend extra time on the foam roller, take yourself to a heated yoga class or simply take things a little easier with some slow cardio followed by lower body releases. Stick to a routine but also, give yourself a break.