We understand that freezing temperatures and snow storms tend to put a damper on your motivation. It's not easy to get your butt off the couch when you have the choice between cuddling underneath a cozy blanket or bundling up and heading to the gym. "Nothing lasts forever and that includes motivation," says Courtney L. Alexander, founder of Flaunt Your Fitness and a personal trainer who, among other things, specializes in strength and endurance training, weight loss, and core training. "There will be times when you will need to re-spark that desire to work out, particularly during the winter months when the cold and sometimes snowy weather can be a deterrent."
One of the best ways to reignite your motivation is to make sure that your work outs are easily accessible. The less obstacles you have to face—like bundling up to brace the cold or scraping ice off of your car—the more likely you'll be to work out. So, on the those days when a winter storm hits or it's just too cold to even think about going back outside, try these at home workout ideas instead.
This would involve eight to twelve strength exercises performed all in a row for three to five rounds. "You can do this from your house with as little as a few dumbbells and a stability ball," says Kyra Williams, a NASM certified personal and nutrition expert at TheGetInShapeGirl.com. "Since circuit training is total body you will save so much time, and even just working out this way three times a week will get you results. Not only that, but since you are focused on lifting and building muscle, you will see your results much faster, which is very motivating."
"On those days when it's impossible to get outside because you are snowed in, doing intervals of bodyweight exercises like squat jumps, jumping lunges, clapping push ups and jumping jacks are great because you can really get your heart rate up which helps blast through fat and extra calories," says Williams.
"Even if you can't make it into a studio you can crank up the heat in your house or get in front of a space heater and practice," says Williams. "There are routines you can find online via podcasts or even free videos on YouTube." She suggests hot yoga not only because it's a great way to keep warm while working out in the winter, but also because it will help to improve your blood flow and circulation
Williams also suggests trying subscription websites were you can sign up for access to personalized workouts and other training features. "If you are a member of my website there are workouts to follow daily, plus card and strength training routines you can do from home with dumbbells, a stability ball and a jump rope," she said. "The workouts show up on your Google calendar and there are videos to see all of the exercises. The easier it is to follow, the more likely you will be to actually do it, and that's the key."
For an, equipment-free, at-home cardio workout that will burn up lots of calories, Alexander suggests getting your groove on. "Put on your favorite up-tempo song and dance your heart out around your apartment," she said. "Put the song on repeat and don't stop moving until you've heard the song three times fully."
If you have a jump rope at home, you can use it to get a heart-pumping cardio workout in a short amount of time. Try an interval workout; jump continuously for 30 seconds (or longer if you can handle it) and then rest actively for one minute by performing bodyweight exercises like squats, push-ups and tricep dips.
Tabata is a specific form of high intensity interval training. A Tabata routine can consist of equipment-free, bodyweight exercises as well as moves that require weights like dumbbells or resistance bands, which is why it works well for any type of at-home workout. An example Tabata workout might include exercises like squat jumps, alternating lunges, push-ups and burpees. You would perform an eight-set circuit of each exercise with about one minute of rest between each circuit. Each set would only last for 20 to 30 seconds, but the objective is to work as hard as you can for that short amount of time in order to increase your heart rate and challenge your anaerobic threshold.