So here we are, the holiday season upon us yet again. We just got through Thanksgiving in one piece and are now spending the next several weeks looking ahead to Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or whatever else gives us reason to celebrate. Time off work, lots of eating, gifts, drunken holiday parties; things are looking up. But see, that is the problem with winter. It starts off with such a bang, lifts our spirits, and then once January 2nd hits…..back to reality.
Depending on where you live, you’re looking at a solid 3, 4, or even 5 months of cold weather, grey skies, rain and/or snow. (Unless of course you’re like me and living in Southern California…although I will still find reason to complain about being cold whenever the temperature dips below 60).
I’ll be perfectly honest with you; going to the gym after getting home from work at 5:30, when it’s pitch black out, rainy, and 35 degrees, flat-out sucks. There’s no way around it. It’s saps your motivation, it’s uncomfortable, and at the risk of being over dramatic, it’s horrible.
Love handles everywhere rejoice. They live to see another day.
What’s even worse, the majority of you did so well over the spring, summer, and fall. You exercised regularly, ate better, and started to see progress. Winter hits, and unfortunately for so many people, it’s like hitting a reset button. All the progress slowly vanishes and you’re essentially back to where you started from last year. It’s an endless cycle of one step forward, one step backward.
So we’re faced with a dilemma…do we brave the cold, miserable weather and force ourselves to do something we reallllly don’t want to do, or pull our best Yogi the Bear impersonation, fatten up, and hibernate all winter? Neither option seems all that enjoyable….but what if there was a third option?
Let me get one very common misconception out of your head right now; you do NOT need a gym to lose weight, build muscle, stay healthy, etc. What if you could continue to see the progress you saw all summer, without ever leaving your home? That was rhetorical; we both know that would be awesome.
In home workouts have been shown time and time again to be just as, if not more effective than spending time in a gym. All you need is an effective in home workout program to follow along with and getting your exercise during those long, cold, winter days is easier than ever. The biggest challenge here is finding an effective workout program so you aren’t simply spinning your wheels all winter. Try staying away from the countless sites giving you a workout plan consisting of a laundry list of exercises to perform in order. Honestly, what could be more boring than that? It’s a chore having to get through them. Some may try to spruce up their plans by giving you a quick video clip for each exercise. Oh my God, really? A 10 second clip showing me each movement on the laundry list you provided me? Where do I sign up..? Get real. Worse yet, those in-home pieces of exercise equipment. For the love of God, please stay away from things like this.
Let me paint a picture for you for a minute. You get home from work. Change out of those uncomfortable work clothes. Start dinner. Move into the living room. Fire up your exercise class on your laptop or TV. While dinner is cooking you spend 30-45 minutes taking an exercise class that leaves you dripping in sweat. Exercise for the day complete.
You didn’t have to leave your warm, cozy home to brave the bitter cold. You didn’t waste time driving around town. You were able to kill two birds with one stone by getting your workout in while dinner cooked. You’ve saved time and you’ve put the love handles on warning; this winter things will be different!
The best programs are the ones that allow you to actively follow along with your instructor. This has been the mantra I’ve followed since day 1. When your instructor on the TV is doing burpees, you’re doing burpees. When your instructor is doing lunges into dumbbell curls, so are you. When your instructor breaks, you break. By working out in this format, there is little left to chance. There is nothing for you to think about. The program you follow along with (if it’s a good one) has been designed with a goal in mind. What’s more, (and if it’s a REALLY good one), it brings you closer to meeting that goal.
Open your mind to other formats of fitness. Fitness is NOT about having to be in a gym everyday to see progress. Fitness is NOT about a laundry list of items to complete each day. Fitness is about actively engaging your body through the use of a wide variety of exercises and workouts (see: Body Diversity Training). As long as you have a well-designed program, it is much more likely you will realize success. This winter, while you’re sitting around at home feeling guilty because you skipped the gym, but not guilty enough to overcome your desire to stay put, consider giving in home workouts a try.
If all this has left you more confused about where to turn now, feel free to leave a comment or shoot us an email. We’ll be more than happy to help you find an in-home program that works best for you.