Getting back to the gym after the holidays can be tough, with your fitness regime hibernating and bad weather keeping you indoors.
But you’re not alone.
Aberdeen personal trainer Aidan Robertson, based at PureGym Kittybrewster, has offered us a few handy tips to keep your motivation high during the shorter and colder days of the year.
Set small, achievable goals
It takes time to build up your stamina and strength, so setting achievable goals is vital when it comes to sticking to your plan.
Start small and build up as you go, there’s a misconception that everyone must spend hours in the gym in order to see results, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Keep it manageable with small goals, and celebrate every time you hit one – this will keep you motivated to continue during the colder months.
Think about what you’re eating
The festive period means indulging in delicious foods.
Trying to avoid these is setting yourself up for failure – you should definitely enjoy these treats.
Alongside the mince pies and the mulled wine, just make sure to include some nutrient-rich fruit and veg, complex carbohydrates and protein to help build and repair your muscles and fuel your workouts.
Enjoy the chocolates, but don’t skip on the sprouts.
Do what you can
A little is still better than nothing.
If you really don’t feel like doing a full hour, or completing your workout, just do what you can.
Sometimes you’ll find once you start, you’re happy to finish. But on the days you don’t, just starting helps to keep exercise as part of your routine.
Try something new
At this time of the year the gym is a little quieter, so it’s a great time to try something new.
Just remember when trying something new it’s best to ask for help to make sure you’re doing it safely.
Ask a personal trainer who might be on-site and happy to help.
Or if you feel tired and don’t want to plan your own workout; book a class instead.
Classes are high energy and a great way to get a sweat on – all you have to do is show up on time.
Most people find that the music and atmosphere mean the time flies by much quicker than working out on their own.
The gym is a great way to spend time with friends and catch up.
Exercising with someone who has a similar fitness level as you can also really help to encourage both of you on, and give some more accountability
Use exercise to de-stress
We often get bogged down in all the extra stresses that come at this time of year so use the gym as time to relax and enjoy yourself.
Thinking of exercise as a way to de-stress, rather than a tool to change your aesthetics, can be a better motivator.
The winter months can make it more difficult to exercise but it can be the perfect time to really work on your goals so that you kick-start the New Year feeling at your best.