Don’t let excuses sabotage your goals this winter

It's that time of the year where my motivation to go to the gym plummets. Boat days in a bikini are long gone, I'm constantly bundled up in layers, and it's so cold that you'd have to drag me out of the house to get me anywhere. It's normal to fall off track during this time. Here are a few ways to stay motivated this winter:

  • Bring a friend| It's easy to hit "Next Episode" on Netflix and put off going the gym when you're by yourself. If you're struggling with self-motivation, find a friend to workout with you. Whether you go to the gym or just do crunches or squats in between commercials, having a buddy will help you hold each other accountable. Try to schedule at least one day a week that the two of you can workout together. Push each other to do one more rep or ten more pounds. Having a gym buddy is a great way to consistently get in a good workout while catching up with a friend.

  • Pencil it in | The holiday season may be behind us, but with work picking back up, and resolutions on resolutions piling up, you don't want to let your workout get lost in your busy day. Write down when you plan on working out in your calendar or planner. You may not always be able to check it off your to-do list, and that's okay! Having it there as a reminder will help motivate you to go to the gym and ensure that you get that time for yourself.    

  • Dress for success | The couch is a dangerous place to be after a long day at work before you've worked out, especially in the winter. Don't get too settled in before heading to the gym. Change into your workout clothes as soon as you leave the office or as soon as you get home, even if you're not planning on working out right away. You're less likely to skip if you're already dressed for it.

  • Keep it interesting | While a workout program or personal trainer may help you stay consistent in your workouts, motivation may still be low. Though working out can be challenging mentally and physically, it should also be fun. If you're not excited about going to the gym, try changing up your routine. Take a new class at your gym. Find a workout video to follow along with at home. Join a recreational sports league. I'll often find a workout or circuit on Instagram or YouTube to incorporate into my normal routine to switch things up. Don't let yourself feel trapped in your norm.

  • #Goals | There are few feelings as satisfying as getting a new personal record. Keep yourself motivated by setting personal fitness goals. Set a goal for the number of days you workout this week. Write down how much weight you want to be able to squat in 2019. Regardless of if it's a small goal you plan to hit that day or one you want to reach within six months, giving a realistic expectation for yourself to meet will give you that extra motivation in the gym and keep you going back in order to conquer it.  

  • Treat yo-self | Yes, working out and keeping your mind and body healthy is important, but it's essential to let loose now and then. Give yourself something to look forward to when you finish your workout or on your rest days. Buy a sweet treat to indulge on or eat that extra slice of pizza. If food isn't your vice, pamper yourself with that new shirt you've been wanting for hitting that PR. Incorporating little breaks and incentives will ultimately keep you focused (and sane).

How do you stay motivated in the gym? Comment below!