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Fighting Mid-Winter Fitness Blues

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This series is sponsored in conjunction with National Fitness Center, East Tennessee’s premier multi-location fitness resource.  I appreciate the opportunity to be part of the #teamNFC program.

How is your fitness/wellness routine going this time of year?  As the temperature drops, is your enthusiasm for fitness cooling along with it?  You’re not alone.  We’re all a bit susceptible to a sort of mid-winter fitness blues.

Winter Fitness Trainer

Mid-winter is especially a time when we can tend to want to curl up by a fireplace with a cup of hot cocoa instead of staying as active as we were in the warmer months.  Colder temps, maybe ice or snow on the roads, could all turn into convenient excuses for detouring from our regular fitness routines.

Hurray for ugly Christmas sweater season, right?  It’s everyone’s chance to hide those extra rolls and whatever else we’ve accumulated as the weather gets colder and we’ve moved into too-much-pumpkin pie and hibernation mode!

Sometimes feeling a little down as sunny days shorten into gloomier winter hours can create a cycle of getting out to exercise less often, even when the experts say we should be concentrating on staying active.  In some cases, medical professionals could help treat something like seasonal affective disorder.  We all know fitness is part of living a heart-healthy lifestyle, don’t we?

You may be going through big changes in life, like the birth of a new baby or other family adjustments.  You would need to ask your medical professional if you have concerns, as well as getting permission from your doctor before starting or drastically changing your fitness routine.

Fitness Class National Fitness Center

Loyal participants in Body Pump class at National Fitness Center in Oak Ridge with instructor Melissa James

So, we may find a variety of excuses why we’ve slacked off our fitness routine, or why we don’t even feel like starting one.  Here are five suggestions to buck this bad habit and stop making excuses:

  1. NOW is always the right time to start or rededicate to a fitness routine.  That cliché that there’s no time like the present is accurate.  Things can only get better when you start today.
  2. Fitness centers are very accommodating to your needs this time of year.  They are competing to offer you the best special offers, gift packages, holiday deals and so on.  Take advantage of this, being mindful of overall value and extras like quality childcare, not just the lowest introductory price.
  3. You will spend money on something around the holidays; why not invest in something as important as your health?  How many of previous years’ Christmas gifts can you not even remember?  If you invest for yourself or a loved one, maybe your entire family, in a season of fitness, you can appreciate the results and create positive memories in the process.
  4. Doing anything is better than not trying at all.  Overwhelmed about how much weight you want to lose?  Ask to meet with a fitness professional about setting realistic goals.  Have physical limitations?  Ask your medical doctor for guidance on this.  Everyone can do something, and the smallest steps can start creating positive results.  Maybe you just start with walking around an indoor track during weather when you wouldn’t walk outside.  Those miles can add up over the winter.  Maybe you have to start at home with a fitness video…anything is better than nothing.
  5. Any fitness routine can add encouragement and build confidence while you eventually work toward fitness goals.  If you still don’t feel ready for bikini season, I’m right there with you, but at least we have several months of head-start, don’t we?

Join me this week on the blog as we explore winter fitness options and weightlifting for women in this fitness-inspired series.  I’ll even share some of my deepest fears about going to a gym — and how I’ve overcome them.  Hint: the gym is not just for those few folks we could envy because they already look like fitness models.  Plus, I want to share resources to help as you create your own winter fitness journey.

Blogs posts at are never intended to help diagnose or treat any medical condition.  Consult a medical professional for your particular needs.  This post is in conjunction with the #teamNFC program at National Fitness Center.  Join @NatFit1 on Mondays in December from 11:00 am to noon Eastern Time for #teamNFC chat and share your #WitnessMyFitness story!

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7 Responses to Fighting Mid-Winter Fitness Blues

  1. Sara December 9, 2015 at 3:00 pm #

    I’m re-starting my fitness routine. In the summer it’s so easy to be outdoors but I admit I fall off this time of year. Thanks for the tips.
    Sara recently posted…The 2015 Mindful Holiday Gift GuideMy Profile

  2. Green Bean December 9, 2015 at 1:18 am #

    Thank you for the inspiration. It is so easy and tempting to think that I’ll catch up on exercise after the holidays. You inspire me to get out and get moving BEFORE I eat all those goodies.
    Green Bean recently posted…Handmade Holiday Gifts: Personalized CardsMy Profile

  3. Marissa Rosen December 8, 2015 at 11:38 pm #

    Way to go, Anne! Starting now, and not on January 1st, is a splendid idea!
    Marissa Rosen recently posted…Enter Masdar’s 2016 ‘Engage’ Blogging Contest! The Transition to a Low-Carbon Economy by 2030My Profile

  4. karen December 8, 2015 at 11:17 pm #

    I always feel more clearer after exercising. It’s just hard to get my sneaks on to get ‘there’.
    karen recently posted…Lavender Crème Brûlée in Instant PotMy Profile

  5. Lori Popkewitz Alper December 8, 2015 at 9:20 pm #

    Exercise is so crucial in the winter! Thanks for the reminder. Even on cold, snowy days there’s always a way to move your body. I actually love to run in the cold weather.
    Lori Popkewitz Alper recently posted…5 Natural Ways to Boost Your Immune SystemMy Profile

  6. anna@greentalk December 8, 2015 at 8:24 pm #

    I find that exercising always helps my mood especially in the winter. Thanks for bring up this great topic.
    anna@greentalk recently posted…5 Fall Garden Maintenance Tips to Make Spring ProductiveMy Profile

  7. Betsy (Eco-novice) December 8, 2015 at 5:21 pm #

    Although fitness is more challenging in the winter, I find it is SO essential to my mental health, particularly on these very short days! I try to get outside whenever I can.
    Betsy (Eco-novice) recently posted…9 Ways to Limit Your Family’s Exposure to Toxic Chemicals: Top Tips for Parents and Parents-to-beMy Profile

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