• Winter Woes: How I Motivate Myself to Exercise

    January 21, 2012

    Brrrrrr!

    Check out the wintery scene that I woke up to in our backyard this morning:

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    Ick.

    Snow.

    I’m just not a fan.

    And I like snow even less when it comes to motivating myself to leave the house to exercise.

    The last thing I wanted to do this morning was venture out into the snow and freezing cold. I mean, bundling up, cleaning the snow off of my car, scraping the windows, and dealing with the messy roads requires a lot of effort just to get myself to CrossFit! I honestly thought about skipping it and staying in my nice, warm bed, but, instead, I psyched myself up by doing these three things:

    • I immediately put on my workout clothes. I knew if I thought about going to CrossFit too much, I’d change my mind and stay home. So, I counted to three and then forced myself out of bed and immediately walked to my closet to put on my workout gear. Sometimes, simply getting dressed for a workout is half the battle for me.
    • I reminded myself how I feel after a workout. Then, I reminded myself how I feel when I skip a workout. I’m not going to lie, it’s usually the later that ultimately motivates me. I hate the “I’m a lazy bum” feeling that I get when I blow off a workout for no good reason.
    • I put the hooded sweatshirt that I planned to wear to CrossFit in the dryer for 5 minutes. When I was about to leave the house, I put on my toasty, right-out-the-dryer sweatshirt to keep me warm as I walked from the house to the car and waited for it to warm up. I swear, it makes things so much more bearable!

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    Breakfast

    Before I went to CrossFit, I ate breakfast, which was “Oatmeal” Minus the Oats with a big scoop of peanut butter. I also drank an iced coffee with soy milk.

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    Workout

    Today’s CrossFit workout left my quads screaming for mercy! Holy moly! The combination of Dead Lifts + Burpees was so challenging. My legs got a killer workout today, so I’m definitely going to be sore tomorrow.

    WOD:

    60 Medicine Ball Slams

    Then,

    3-6-9-12-15-12-9-6-3

    Dead Lifts (185, 105)

    Burpees

    Then,

    60 Medicine Ball Slams

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    After CrossFit, Mal and I cleaned the house from top to bottom and then I did a few organization projects, which included making use of a few goodies that my friends at Real Simple sent me. 

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    One of the items that I received was a 3-Piece Trunk Organizer, which is intended to store supplies, groceries, and other goods in the trunk or back seat of your car, but, as soon as I opened it, I discovered a new purpose for it.

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    Purse storage!

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    The organizer is fairly large with four compartments to separate and hold up my purses so I can clearly see and access them. My purses have been stored on the floor of my closet in a big, messy pile for as long as I can remember, so this organizer is the perfect solution. Real Simple rules. Thanks for the goodies, Kristen!

    Snacks

    While I cleaned and organized, I snacked on a hard-boiled egg and a handful of almonds. I also drank a Peanut Butter Wonderful iced coffee from Marylou’s.

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    Lunch

    A little while later, I threw together a quick lunch: canned tuna mixed with avocado, chopped celery, shredded carrot, and truffle salt on a slice of Paleo Bread. Holy yum! It tasted wicked good!

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    I’m spending the afternoon catching up with work and then Mal and I are going on a date! Yay! I love date night!

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    { 97 comments… read them below or add one }

    Tara January 22, 2012 at 9:48 am

    Hi Tina, I’ve been interested in Crossfit for awhile now, but I don’t know if I can fit it into my schedule. Is there a required or suggested number of times to go per week? You seem to go several times a week, so I don’t know if it would be as beneficial if I could only go 3/week? I haven’t spoken with anyone at a Crossfit about that yet either, just thought I would ask!

    Reply

    Tina January 22, 2012 at 9:56 am

    I think it’s great you want to try CF! From what I know about CF, there isn’t a recommended number of times per week you should go, and you can def benefit from going 3 times a week. There are plenty of people at my box that go 2-3 times per week and/or do other workouts (running, yoga, etc.) to compliment CF. Let me know what you think of it! :)

    Reply

    Nicole @ Giraffelegs January 22, 2012 at 10:01 am

    ugh I really needed this post. Winter has made me not want to to work out, and I hate that!

    Reply

    Candace January 22, 2012 at 11:20 am

    Speaking of motivation, I reread your book yesterday while I was snowed in! I went for a run this morning and took a few tips from your strength-training workout, too!

    Reply

    michelle kim January 22, 2012 at 11:21 am

    Oh, man! It’s great to read how you motivate yourself to workout (or get out the door) even when it’s so cold!
    I feel super lazy now, and I live in Northern California where it only just started to rain a bit. I’ll definitely change right into my workout gear after church today!

    Reply

    Sarah January 22, 2012 at 11:31 am

    Great tips for getting out of the house on cold day! I especially love the dryer trick ;)

    Reply

    Krista January 22, 2012 at 11:51 am

    I cannot find those boots online and I really want them! Do you know the style name?

    Reply

    Tina January 22, 2012 at 11:56 am

    I bought them a few years ago, so they might not have them anymore. Sorry!

    Reply

    Krista January 22, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    @Tina: Thanks. I found a shorter version, but they’re not nearly as cute as yours. disappointing!

    Reply

    Tina January 22, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    Oh, bummer. Uggs makes some great boots though!

    Reply

    Claire! January 22, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    @krista- I have similar uggs, but the top is a bit different. They’re super comfy though. The style is called the Ugg Belcloud, in the brown color. Good luck!

    Reply

    Emily @ The Swallow Flies January 22, 2012 at 11:56 am

    Your lunch looks so good! If I didn’t have so much quinoa mac & cheese leftover, I’d definitely be making that today! After I, too, muster up the motivation to venture outdoors for a workout – ugh.

    Reply

    Hilary January 22, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    When it comes to winter and working out, for me, it’s pretty much “Just do it.” If I don’t get out there and make it happen, it just won’t. That’s why I have to workout in the morning.

    Reply

    TeenyLittleSuperChef January 22, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    How is it that after all these years, I’ve never once thought to mix avocado into my tuna salad? That’s crazy! I love avocado, I love tuna, obviously the two were meant to share a sandwich together. Hmmm… oh well, at least I know what to do now. Thanks for enlightening me, Tina!
    Crap weather really sucks when you want to exercise. I usually just end up doing all my working out at home, even if it means just running up and down the stairs. I get a little stir-crazy just sitting on the couch waiting for the rain to let up.

    Reply

    Lisa (bakebikeblog) January 22, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    How gorgeous are those flowers on your table!!!

    Reply

    Julie @ Orcas Health Journey January 22, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    Oh wow! What a way to eat tuna salad! Will try mixing in some avocados next times! :)

    Reply

    Brandi @ Faith Fitness and Laughter January 22, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    Snow! :) Hope that you date night went well and that you guys had a great time! :)

    Reply

    Christine @ Oatmeal in my Bowl January 22, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    Lunch does look wicked good! Going to have to try that myself. Thanks!

    Reply

    Emily January 22, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    Hope date night is wonderful, and thanks for the “get out there and do your workout even if its cold” tips. We had an ice storm here in southern Ohio on Friday night, and I am training for my first marathon and had to do my long run on the treadmill yesterday. Ugh, but I did it!

    Reply

    Tasha @Tashasdish January 22, 2012 at 7:03 pm

    It’s really hard for me to motivate on bad weather days as well. I always tell myself a similar line to keep myself motivated: “You never regret a work out, but you always regret not working out”. It kind of puts things in perspective and gets me out the door.

    Reply

    Anna E. January 22, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    So the sweatshirt in the dryer trick totally did it for me this morning. Rocked it out AND probably burned an extra 3 calories from the added heat. WIN! Haha.

    Hope date night was fun!

    Reply

    Kim January 22, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    Thanks for the purse storage idea!

    Reply

    Sarah@The Flying ONION January 23, 2012 at 8:29 am

    Great tips and ideas for staying motivated! I find it harder and harder, every winter, to get outside and just go! But getting out there is honestly the toughest part, which just goes to show how mental it is. ;)

    LOVE your water bottle in that last picture, by the way!! :D

    Reply

    Cait Brown January 23, 2012 at 9:26 am

    Thanks so much for this! My dorm is literally 50 yards away from the gym but in the freezing cold and ice, even that short distance seems so far and completely unmotivates me. This post has such perfect timing!

    Cait

    Reply

    Mandi January 23, 2012 at 10:42 am

    Oh man.. I should thank my lucky stars that we still have 60*+ weather here on the coast of SC (what is snow, anyway :-)). Awesome job psyching yourself up!

    Reply

    honeywhatscooking January 23, 2012 at 11:35 am

    that avocado bread looks so good, I’ve tried plain avocado on toast with lime, never added carrots and all. yum! i know we got slammed with snow too. :-(

    Reply

    Annie January 23, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    Eeps that organizer thing is EXACTLY what I need!

    I have spent the last few years trying to figure out how to get groceries into my SUV without everything sloshing and rolling around (i.e. make quick left turn >> watermelon rolls onto loaf of bread >> not happy :( ). I also love that when I don’t need it, I can tuck it away as a cute little purse thing. Will get!

    Reply

    Mallory @ Have your cake January 23, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    i think it’s key to imagine how you would feel AFTER you exercise and how you would feel if you skip it. that always works for me!

    Reply

    Wendy Irene January 23, 2012 at 2:07 pm

    Have fun on your date tonight Tina! You guys deserve an awesome night out!

    Reply

    Sarah January 23, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Oh my goodness, is that an optical illusion or is your fence falling over under the snow?! Scary!!!

    Reply

    Korin January 23, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    I did this WOD this morning. Holy smokes it was tough! My lungs and legs were on fire! I was trying to keep up with the girl next to me!

    Reply

    Lisa January 23, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    I go snowshoeing! If there’s snow it’s the perfect exercise. :D

    Reply

    Megan January 23, 2012 at 8:02 pm

    Your lunch looks amazing! I have been really into avocados lately, so I will definitely be trying this!

    Reply

    jana January 24, 2012 at 5:53 pm

    Tina, i have’nt been getting any of the comments on your blog for several days. How come? Never had a problem before. It’s not in my spam either, i looked. lol.

    Reply

    Kelly@FitnessKings January 26, 2012 at 11:14 am

    You are so right! Getting out of big sweatpants and a comfy sweatshirt into workout gear is half the battle of forcing yourself to exercise. When I finally make the decision to just get going, I know that I can motivate myself to get my workout done. I HATE the feeling of dwelling on the fact that I just didn’t get my butt to the gym. The hardest thing to do is just get yourself there, once I’m working out I feel better about myself that I didn’t make any excuses to skip out on a workout. Exercise is the most rewarding thing I do all day!

    Reply

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