At a certain time of year Upstate New York feels like the arctic. The weather brings cold, snow and little daylight that can make it really difficult to stay motivated to workout. After all, I am going to be in big cozy clothing all winter, who cares what is underneath.
One of the common excuses that people often make is, “it's too hard to get out of bed on cold, dark mornings." While it certainly is much easier being inside our comfy and cozy bed, it isn’t going to help you reach your goals, granted you have goals for your health and wellness.
Even though this may seem like a valid excuse, it is an excuse nonetheless. Here are a few ways to overcome this challenge: set thermostat higher in the morning, get an alarm with natural light, and/or have a fun and upbeat song as your alarm clock. All of those will lift your mood and energy to help you take on the day. It's easy to fall into a vicious cycle of excuses that destroy momentum and kill motivation to be active.
Another excuse we see a lot is that “I am just not that motivated to come to class regularly in the winter.” What motivates you in the summer may be completely different than what motivates you in the winter. We are going to tackle this one from two different angles: 1. Competitive CrossFit Athlete and 2. Recreational CrossFit Athlete.
Competitive CrossFit Athlete:
CrossFit as a sport has a season like every other sport, with the vast majority only being able to participate in the regular season, The CrossFit Open, which runs from Late February to Mid-Late March. If you are motivated to do well in The Open then the winter is the best time to focus your energy on being better at skills you struggle with, get a little stronger and get your conditioning the best it can be. In the winter there aren’t many umbrella drinks pulling us away from working on being better humans.
Recreational CrossFit Athlete:
This is probably the majority of people. Folks who just want to work out a few days a week and be healthy, want to look better nakey, want to have more energy, etc… Without the draw to The Open what is your motivation during this time? Almost the same! What’s the bigger picture? What’s your why? Why do you workout in the first place? Once you reflect on your why, create mini goals or challenges around your bigger goals with some pretty cool rewards to keep you motivated and your focus off of the weather.
Remember, nothing is truly good or bad, how we think about something makes it so. If we can adjust our mindset and know why we are doing something it makes it much easier to buy-in and be consistent. In addition, writing down your goals and telling others about them has been found to have the best results long term. The weather is the weather, and unless you move, it will always be there. It’s time to stop using it as an excuse to be unhealthy and strive for your best regardless of what is happening outside.