Over the winter months, we all get hit with fatigue that stops us from doing much. Other than chilling in front of the fire with a blanket, the winter weather doesn’t invite much else to do. This poses a problem as when we don’t move as much, we tend to put on weight.
Now, let’s be clear, this is not a post about fat shaming. We are all beautiful in our own way. This is an untenable link to the size of our waists and our overall health. This is why tracking our waist size is one of the best things we can do to help keep an eye on our health. Here are some ideas about how to keep your waistline under control during the winter months.
Control what you are eating
This one seems pretty obvious but it requires some extra effort in the winter. Sitting in the house when the rain is lashing down, a movie on the TV, and a bag of sweets on your lap. We have all done it but we all need to stop it. This might be easier said than done because we have all developed a bad habit. However, if you would prefer to watch TV without sweets and crisps, you might have to look into ways to break the habit. You can click here for more info on how to manage those cravings. There is a good chance that you are eating because you are bored rather than hungry.
Train for a marathon
Ok, maybe a marathon is a bit too much, but you should always dream big. Training for a big achievement can help you to reach certain fitness goals, even if you have no intention of tackling something so big within the next 12 months. Marathon training involves getting out there in all weathers and pounding the pavement. It is tough, it is long, but if you ever decide to take part in a timed race, you will be ready. You will have to trust us when we say there is no other feeling like getting your medal handed to you after you cross the finish line. However, there are plenty of marathons and much harder races that you can aim to take part in if you want to challenge yourself.
This is a strange one but hear us out for a second. When you exercise in the cold, you burn a lot more calories than when you exercise in warm weather. This can be great news if you are trying to shift a bit of extra weight. There is some debate around whether just being cold can burn calories so it might not be worth your while to run around the garden naked in the snow. The important thing to remember is that if you are exercising in the cold weather, you should layer up and make sure that your body temperature does not fluctuate too much as it can make you very ill. If you are going to play in the snow and ice, make sure that you do it safely.
If there is one thing that YouTube has become known for, besides cat videos, it is the amount of talented content that you can find. And this includes fitness channels. The fitness channels on YouTube have grown bigger and better over the years. These are not just people wanting to make some money, many of these channels are run by professional trainers and experts. You don’t need to go hardcore with the exercise, you can choose anything from HIIT workouts to low-intensity yoga. The important thing is that you are active for around 30 minutes a day, and thanks to the length of the YouTube videos, you can time this down to a T.
Take up a hobby
On the back of one of our other points, we would like to point out that if your hands are busy, you are less likely to put them into the cookie jar. When the weather is cold, you might want to curl under a blanket, so why not grab a craft that you can do while you are there? Cross-stitch has become a favourite with a wide range of designs to choose from. You could also try your hand at knitting or crochet. You could even create your own special winter blanket to curl up under for years to come. We are pretty sure that you won’t want to get cheesy nacho fingers on your clean cross-stitch so it should keep you away from the snacks. Trust us, you will only get a grease stain on your project once for you to be extra careful and avoid the snacks in future.
Enlist your partner or a friend
There is no denying that having a fitness buddy can make all the difference. For example, most people prefer running marathons with other people or in the crowd because they love the energy. Having a friend or partner there with you can help you to keep your own energy up. This is really good if you have a habit of skipping exercise sessions in favour of a duvet day. However, make sure your friend is as motivated as you are and doesn’t lack discipline. Otherwise, you will have to talk yourself and them out of going home when the going gets tough. If you don’t have a friend who can help, there are plenty of online fitness communities that will cheer you on. Or you could join your local running group or fitness class to make some new friends.
Change your diet
We know this might be the same as controlling what you eat, but it is slightly different. The winter months are about food, feeding yourself so that you can survive the harsh winter months before there is no food and you have to wait for the spring again. What was that? You are not a bear? Exactly. There is no reason to have a full-fat diet during the winter, it will only make you ill. What you can do is alter your diet so that you can still enjoy the comfort of winter food, just without the lashings of sugar and fat on the side. Now is the time to take note of what you are eating and see if you can make any improvements. This will come in handy if you do start training for some big events. If you are stuck on ideas, you might need to enlist the help of a dietitian to help make some changes.
Buy a tracker
During the winter, you might not realise how often you sit on your bum during the day. Having a fitness tracker can help you be more aware of how much activity you get during the day. If you discover that you are not moving as much as you thought, now is the time to get more active. Fitness trackers come in many different forms, from the fancy iWatch and Garmin to the simple step counter. Whatever device you use, you should make sure that it works for you. It might be a better idea to start with a cheaper option and see how you go with it. As your fitness progresses, you could move up and choose a different device. If you don’t have a device at the moment, you could ask Santa if you can get one for Christmas. Obviously, this is to help with your New Year goals too so it is a present with a purpose.