This may sound harsh because you’re probably wrapped in a scarf and layered in a big sweater right now but I’ve got news: Summer bodies are made in the Winter. And we are well on our way to Spring. I wish I had the ability to give you the confidence to rock shorts and a bathing suit come Memorial Day, but I can only provide guidance, cheerleading and nudges to help you be your best self. It is still winter (sadly), but I can feel the sunshine at the end of the tunnel. Here are our 5 tips to help you stay motivated on the cold days so we can welcome the warmer weather with open (and toned) arms.
1) Keep on moving. It’s dark and cold, but you’ll never regret getting in that workout after you’re done. We suggest skipping the cozy couch and instead find a cozy studio where you can get your groove on. Movement is good for our bods and our minds during these shorter days when we crave sunshine. Can’t make it to a workout? Let your lifestyle be your gym. Walk wherever you need to be, go skiing, go hiking, take your phone call standing up, do a lap or two around the office or use a bathroom on another office floor. Whatever it takes, just keep moving. Truly there are no excuses.
2) No drinking at home. I’m a big believer in socializing and of course I enjoy a cocktail or two, however I find during the winter, polishing off a bottle of wine while while laying on your couch is a bit too easy to do. Unfortunately those calories add up. So my rule is simple, when you are home, no drinking alone. Instead brew some tea, sip kombucha or just plain old water and enjoy the health benefits, a clear head and a bloat free morning. Nights I take off from alcohol I like to support my liver with dandelion tea – it’s grounding, soothing and supportive .
3) Keep an eye on your local farmers markets. March is that awkward time- too warm for the heavy parka, but still too chilly for a jean jacket. We’re not quite ready for crisp salads, but we’re phasing out the chili and stews. The green markets are slowly turning more colorful, so we suggest you zoom in on what’s fresh and let that encourage your meals.
4) Portion control always wins. Especially at dinner. My first rule, fill up on veggies they are your fuel, your fun and yes your only “free” food (read, serve with a heavy hand). But when more decadent food calls your name, remember to split your plate so you’ll still feel great. Fill half your plate with veggies, get creative and colorful please! Then divide the other half into quarters filling one with lean protein (~ 4 oz) and the other with complex carbs (~ 1/3 c). Balanced, delicious but never over the top.
5) Practice Intermittent Fasting. We recommend 12 hours for most people and yes it is all the rage right now. While the jury is still out on any long -term benefits, there is certainly something to be said for giving your digestive tract a rest and breaking up with late night TV snacks. Close the kitchen, nurse your tea, brush your teeth, and zone into another activity if you need a distraction. We like reading, knitting or even folding laundry. You’ll sleep better, digest better, possibly drop a few pounds and bloat all while getting in touch with your true hunger. Now wouldn’t that be nice?
So there you have it, five solid tips to keep you from getting soft this winter. Gear up early and make your transition to spring seamless!