There’s no doubt about it: winter often leads to lack of activity. Earlier sunsets, later sunrises, and colder temperatures aren’t exactly inviting circumstances for physical activity. Couple that with the prevalence of cold weather comfort foods, and we have the perfect recipe for a winter slump. True, cuddling up inside may be appealing for a few months, but come spring, people often lack energy, despite a desire to get outside and enjoy themselves. So, how can you overcome your winter slump and get back into the swing of things? Here are a few ways to spark your motivation and make strides toward your new year’s health goals:
Reduce Screen Time
We may not realize it, but constant exposure to television, smartphones, tablets, and computers can wreak havoc on our ability to rest. Not only do they keep us up late into the night, they also emit a specific type of light that can prevent us from getting restful sleep. This type of light prevents our bodies from producing the sleep hormone melatonin, affecting our ability to regenerate during the night. To prevent this, try to eliminate screen exposure at least two hours before going to sleep. This will allow your body to produce sleep hormones that will help you achieve a deep and restful sleep.
Get More Vitamin D
Not surprisingly, many people feel that winter has a negative effect on mood. It’s no secret that we get less sunshine during the winter months, which can seriously deplete our bodies’ levels of vitamin D. Known as the “happy vitamin,” vitamin D is essential for the brain’s production of neurotransmitters involved in mood regulation. When we lack adequate vitamin D, not only do we experience poor mood, we also see drops in energy levels. To combat this, try to get out in the sun for at least 20 minutes per day. If you can’t do that, consider adding a vitamin D supplement to your daily routine.
Practice Morning Exercise
Whether it’s stretching, jogging, walking, or going to the gym, making morning exercise a priority can have a huge effect on our health and wellbeing. Not only do early morning workouts ensure we meet our physical activity needs for the day, they also trigger the production of neurotransmitters that improve mood. Start your day off on the right foot by making morning exercise a priority and watch as your entire day improves.
Eat More Plants
There’s no doubt about it: plants are among the healthiest food we can consume. Boasting a variety of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, fiber, and healthy carbohydrates, plants provide us with a plethora of benefits. If you’re lacking energy, chances are, it may be due to a deficiency in any one of the dozens of nutrients your body needs to function properly. Including a variety of fruits and vegetables in your diet is a sure way to increase nutrient intake while simultaneously improving digestion and increasing energy levels.
Rest and Relaxation
Nothing spells fatigue like not getting enough rest. Not only does rest mean getting enough sleep, it also means setting aside time to do things that rejuvenate both your body and mind. Whether that means a relaxing bath, reading a good book, meditating, or listening to your favorite music, taking time out of the day to relax and enjoy yourself is essential. Doing so will reduce levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, allowing you to better cope with the stresses of daily living.
Getting back into the swing of things after winter is never an easy task. But with a bit of dedication and a hefty dose of self-care, transitioning from winter hibernation into the excitement of spring doesn’t have to be so hard. Simply take a bit of time for yourself each day, feed yourself healthy food, and stay moving. In no time at all, you’ll be on the road to your healthiest self!
A great way to stay fit during a time when you may prefer to stay bundled up is by getting a fitness membership at a local HIIT studio. PumpFit Club in Fort Lauderdale is that facility! We focus on interval training that combines both strength and cardio training for an intense workout. The winter is the time when many people make excuses for not working out. Break through those mental barriers when you join us today for an unmatchable fitness experience! Contact us to discover how you can get your first class free!