Avoid winter weight gain by using these 3 tips

Old man winter is slowing creeping up on us.  

And I don’t know about you, but there’s not one thing I like about the cold. The wind, rain, ice, sheet, hail and snow. I’m not a fan of any of it. It all sucks.

When winter fully kicks in, and you need to exercise but it’s nasty outside, you’ve got a choice to make.

  1. Stay home, wrap yourself in your favorite blanket and watch TV.
  2. Risk the elements to go to the gym because you’re just that keen.
  3. Exercise in the comfort of your own home.

Although option one you should take when you’re feeling sore, tired or a little low on motivation, 2 and 3 are your go to options to prevent the winter blues.

And unless its life threatening or generally unsafe driving conditions, drive to the gym and get after it.

However, when the weather is terrible or you’re not feeling up to usual training, use these tips to keep the winter blues away.

1. Have a backup plan

There are times when going to the gym or outdoor exercise becomes almost impossible. And rather than throwing in the towel and skipping your exercise completely, use the towel for this body weight circuit.

The towel is for more than wiping your sweat. It creates sweat too. 😊

Warm up
  1. Bodyweight squat 10 reps
  2. Incline push up – 5 reps
  3. Marching in place 50 reps

Repeat this warm up once for a total of two circuits and then do this.

Repeat this three times for a total of four circuits. Rest as little as possible between exercises and rest 1 minute at the end of each circuit.

2. The world is your gym

When time and the weather is against you, it’s time to get creative with your exercise and to think outside the gym.

Here are some common household items (besides a towel) that you can use for exercise. Granted it’s not a lot of resistance but when it’s cold outside and you have no equipment, beggars can’t be chooses.

Use cans of food for these arm and shoulder exercises

With an empty milk jug to do these exercises.

3. Let’s make a deal

Winter weight gain varies by individuals and research shows the average weight gain is between 5-7 pounds. Some people gain weight because they have Seasonal Affective Disorder—a type of winter depression.

However, most of us can’t blame the winter blues for our tendency to put on a few pounds during the cold winter months. Because warm bread is yum when it’s cold outside.

So, why does this really happen?  According to Lawrence J. Cheskin, MD, founder and director of the Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, it happens because we eat more and move less during the winter months. (1)

Breaking news, right?  But here is what you can do about it.

Plan your occasional splurge, and don’t deviate from your plan.

Unending deprivation is not a great idea and it never works in the long term. However, you can be intentional about the time, place and food that you let yourself indulge in.

Love cake?  Then let’s make a deal.  Eat better for ten days.  And then at the end of those ten days, have your cake guilt free and enjoy it.  Then set the next goal.  But don’t deviate from your plan in the meantime.

If you do, you lose the cake.  And if you eat the cake regardless, you’re only cheating yourself.

Don’t waste your fun calories on something that doesn’t compare to your favorite cake.

Keep moving

Exercise is not an optional activity during the winter months.  When it’s cold and the urge to do nothing is strong, you need to keep the body in motion.  Exercise is effective at preventing weight gain as it helps raise your metabolism to burn calories.

And every bit counts.

Please don’t even worry so much about losing weight or getting in the shape of your life; just work to keep the winter scale-creep from happening to you.

Wrapping up

There are already plenty of excuses not to exercise and lots of temptation for weight gain. Let’s not let winter be one of them.


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