It's getting colder outside. Mornings come much too early. Evenings are dark and our couches appear a lot more inviting. To-do's lists grow longer with a slew of holiday cheer to be done and our social obligations occupy our already over-flowing calendars. The holiday season. One of the easiest times to throw our workouts aside. "I'll start fresh again in the New Year. There's too much to do right now. I'm too tired. Next week I'll get back to my workout." Sound familiar?
I'm speaking from my very own experience. Lately I've fallen off track. My mind is consumed with thoughts of Pinterest crafts and gifts that need to be wrapped, I've found myself saying, "I'll get back into things in January." But NO! When I don't exercise my energy actually drops. I just don't feel great. I'm kind of a you know what.
So I decided to motivate my own butt. And I'm sharing my top tips for making the time and getting the job done. If you're tired of starting over, if you want to maintain your workouts during a busy season, if you want some extra motivation and reassaurance that you are not alone, read on.
1. Become an early bird.
Before I became a fitness instructor the thought of taking a 6am class seemed insane. Now I've come to realize there's something to starting your day in a motivating setting and just getting it done before the sun rises. Here's my advice for conquering pre-work workouts:
- You must pre-register for class. You can NOT say/think that you will do it in the morning because you won't. The alarm will go off and you will hit snooze and vow to try again tomorrow. Sign up and hold yourself accountable. You have to commit to it. Otherwise it will not happen. Trust me!
- Preparation is key. Lay out your clothes, shoes, jacket and everything you need the night before. It saves time and reinforces the fact that you make your workout happen.
- Phone a friend. Sign up for workouts with a friend. Imagine how mad your friend will be if you no-show. Tag teaming always works.
- Better yet, tell the instructor. This is a big one. I've recently had some students and friends text the evening before class to let me know they will be attending. They know if they don't show up I will make them pay next time they are on the mat. I tested it out myself this week in Lauren Hefez's 6:15am class. I told her I would be there and I didn't want to let her down. Totally worked!
- When all else fails, think of something else that will motivate you. In the mornings for me it's coffee. I tell myself if I make it to class I get to buy a coffee on the way home. It's the little things sometimes.
2. Keep it simple. Obviously I'm a big fan of group fitness classes, but you don't need to attend group classes to stay active and healthy. Get outside. Walk to work. Breathe in the fresh air. In my neighborhood we have huge hills. I purposely walk up them pushing my son in his stroller knowing that this might be my only chance for exercise on some days. Think outside of the box for easy ways to move your body. Chances are it will motivate you to crave more exercise.
3. Involve your friends and make it social. Similar to success in early morning workouts, rallying your friends to help motivate you is a win win. This is the time of year when people want to get together. Instead of just going out to dinner, plan to attend a group fitness class together and then opt for a juice or smoothie afterwards. Spending time together doesn't mean you need to drink excess wine and splurge on cheat meals.
4. Try new things. There's no better way to stay motivated than by being excited. Take a break from your routine and try something new. This is a big one for me. I'm in the process of making a list of must-try classes that I want to experience as the year winds down and 2016 approaches (I will be sharing this with you guys to hold myself accountable). And I'm getting a head start, with my first ever Barry's Bootcamp class that I'm registered for this Saturday. Christina Lodde, please have mercy on me....
5. If you treat it like a priority it will become one. It's so easy to write off your workouts right now. But if you set your mind to it and tell yourself it's important it will be. It helps to share your vision with those around you or even on social media. For me, it's important I tell my husband how I'm feeling. He helps to encourage me to take the time to do what I need to do.
So there you have it. This is my advice for staying on track the next few weeks. I know you can do it. And I'm always here for you guys. If you need help staying motivated please email me and I'm happy to give you the extra nudge that maybe you need. And if I see you in class I'll give you a high five or a hug. Please do the same if you see me on the mat next to you. Especially if it's at 6am. ;) We're all in this together!
What are you're tips for keeping yourself sane and feeling good this holiday season. Please share in the comments. I'd love all the advice I can get.