How to exercise when winter is telling you to stay in bed

Winter is here, which means darker mornings, earlier nights and cold weather. Gone are the days where Instagram motivates us to get that ‘bikini body’ and the sun invites us to get up and moving. Exercising in winter seems to be harder than ever, especially with Christmas delicacies and the comfort of bed tempting us to stay wrapped up and inactive.

However, there are ways to beat the temptations of hibernation and there are benefits in doing so. Regular exercise can make you feel happier and decrease feelings of stress. Regardless of how intense your workout is, you still reap the benefits. With deadlines piling up and exams on the way, not only can exercise act as a brief period of procrastination but can leave you feeling happier and more driven. Finding the motivation to get these benefits can be difficult so here are ways to inspire yourself to work out.

Indoors: When leaving the house just isn’t an option, try an indoor workout. Lots of exercises don’t require weights or machines such as lunges, planking, mountain climbers and jumping jacks (to only name a few). If you do want the added weight there are also many home alternatives for you to try – tinned goods, water bottles, packets of rice all add resistance that can give your workout that bit extra. You can even try flat yoga. Grab your flatmates and try some yoga positions to improve flexibility, strength and posture.

Classes: There are many gym classes that offer fun alternatives to the monotony of a gym workout. They offer a range of activities for you and friends to enjoy, whether it is a high-intensity spinning class or a Pilates class. Not only is it a great way of meeting new people, but classes are also led by extremely motivational instructors. Having the regularity of a class can be a great incentive to get yourself moving and with lots of student deals available, make sure to check it out.

Walks around the city: Edinburgh has many sites to explore so why not take a walk around the city and see what the city has to offer? While Arthur’s Seat may have to take a back-seat until spring, there are lots of beautiful locations to take a stroll.  Such places include the Royal Botanical Garden (their annual Christmas trail begins on the 23rd November) and Portobello Beach and Garden – just remember to wrap up.

While exercising in winter can seem a chore it can rid you of those winter blues and bring energy back into the season. It can be a stressful time of year but it’s important to take some time for yourself and have some fun when working out.

Image: conayio via pxhere

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