How to Find Motivation For Winter Workouts

January 4, 2016

How To Find & Keep Motivation For Winter Workouts

While growing up in one of the snowiest cities in the U.S. (Hey Syracuse, go Orange!) is typically not much to brag about, it did teach me a few valuable skills when it comes to fitness. Since the ground is buried under snow for 75% of the year, I’ve learned numerous tricks to make sure my workouts don’t suffer despite daily blizzards and below zero temperatures. Here’s how to keep your bod in shape, even if you are hiding underneath a floor-length parka!

The Playlist
If there’s anyone who can get you out of bed, it’s Justin Bieber’s new song on repeat (#Sorry, not sorry). Keep your playlist up-to-date with new songs or podcasts to you give you that extra somethin’ somethin’ to look forward to. I love scrolling through iTunes new artist suggestions to find some hidden gems that haven’t been warn out by the radio just yet. Now is also the perfect time to catch up on those Serial episodes to prepare for season two of this addicting podcast!

The Gear
While it’s important to include lots of layers to keep warm during wintry workouts outside, you also don’t want to weigh yourself down. Stick to fleece-lined leggings and wind-breaking materials to keep you comfortable. A vest is the perfect options to ensure your core doesn’t freeze and a wool headband can keep your ears cozy without getting soaked with sweat. Since it’s likely you’ll be working out in dim light due to shortened days, light-up wrist bands and reflective gear is a must! And, as always, running outside is free!

The Class
If blowing winds and icy sidewalks still don’t appeal to you, search around for local gyms and fitness studios to join before the New Year’s rush sets in. Since monthly memberships can add up quickly, ask studios about their new member offers (typically less than half of usual costs!). If you love the class, consider splitting a package with a friend or asking for particular discounts (teacher/student/military) to get the most bang for your buck. As always, scope out packages on Groupon and make sure to search for free community events at churches, new studios and recreation centers.

The Group
It’s easy to skip your run when your only obligation is to your iPod. To encourage some accountability, join a running group (most Lululemons hold them for free!) or workout group (November Project is growing to new cities!) where you’re expected to attend each week. Not only will it decrease the chances of you skipping out to watch Scandal reruns, fitness groups can help you achieve personal goals more quickly since they’re less likely to let you quit early. A little friendly competition might be just what you need to PR for that spring half marathon.

The Time
Shorter days, in turn, increase the desire to cozy up as soon as the moon comes out…even if it is 5pm. Try waking up an hour earlier and switching to morning workouts to use the most of the earlier sunrise. By starting your day with a sweat session, you’ll be less likely to bail on your sneakers if something comes up…or you just want to spend some quality time with your space heater and Netflix.

The Equipment
Half the battle is getting your butt to the gym. Eliminate the transition and get your workouts in at home. Invest in a set of hand weights and find quality workouts on YouTube or Pinterest. To make it even easier, complete my favorite quick circuit of squats, dips, and push-ups with 10-15 reps each completed three times. Finish off with a couple 1 minute planks!

The Goal
To keep motivation high, consider signing up for a spring race or setting a new dead lift goal by April to have something to work towards during the winter months. By giving yourself a specific objective to reach towards, you’re more likely to have consistent workouts and scheduled sessions since you know exactly what you want to achieve, rather than some ambiguous ‘bikini body’ that offers little direction.

How do you motivate yourself to workout in the winter?
The past few years I’ve been signing up for a half marathon in late March. It forces me to begin training in December…right after my body takes a huge hit from the holidays…and keeps me on track.




Stay up to date on Juliette’s adventures by following her on Instagram –julietteelise & twitter @JulietteElise_ !

6 comments so far.

6 responses to “How to Find Motivation For Winter Workouts”

  1. Briana says:

    Love this post! The winter is definitely much more challenging to motivate myself to get out of bed, for one, and to get outside. I think that gear makes a huge difference. A warm shirt or sweatshirt can turn an otherwise miserable workout into something bearable! xxx

    • Juliette Kopp says:

      Definitely agree! As long as I keep my core warm (at least as long as possible!) then I can convince myself that 32 degrees isn’t *that* chilly.

  2. I can’t go for a run without company – no matter if it’s winter or summer. I’m thankful I’ve got my friends and we exercise together. Strongly agree about the headband – it’s very uncomfortable when your ears freeze – your head starts pounding and aching.

    • Juliette Kopp says:

      Another great tip for motivation. Friends definitely keep me accountable when I want to quit!

  3. Krysten says:

    I started running this time last year because I love Disney and was so enamored of all the runDisney programs they offer. Over the course of last year I sort of lost my focus by this past weekend was the WDW Marathon weekend and after seeing all the pictures on Facebook from the race, I’m remind why I wanted to do it in the first place and am eager to lace up my shoes and go for a run! 🙂

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