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I grew up in Edmonton and having experienced the harsh winters wanting to hide in my bed all day, the idea of getting up and moving sometimes felt like such a task. I have been a personal trainer for over 15 years and keeping people focused on their goals and staying motivated through these long winter months are hard. We all struggle some days but staying focused and motivated is key.

Here are my top tips for staying healthy and active over the winter:

  1. Consistency: Regardless of what you get done on the day, show up and at least make an attempt. Creating healthy habits is so important. Even if you're struggling to get moving, show up and do something. You notice you'll start to miss it if you skip a day. 
  2. Accountability: Stay accountable to someone else, find a friend, a trainer, someone to hold you accountable to your goals. With my clients they have to check off a completed box on their online programs. Even having a friend to meet you.
  3. Goal: Find a goal that excites you and pick a goal that makes you motivated to train. Many people perhaps pick a goal like running because they think that is the way to get their health back but later discover they would rather do something else physical. There are lots of other fun things you can do to get your health back so make sure its something enjoyable.
  4. Assess: Plan a mini assessment midway, and have a midway target check in, no matter what your goal is. These can be fun fitness challenges to see what you've accomplished, a VO2 test, or other measurement. It takes 21 days for your body to reach adaptation so I like to pick a mid away assessment around the 8 week mark. This is also a great opportunity to change things up if something is not working.   
  5. Variety: Keep it fun in the winter. Mix it up and try something new. Whether it's a fitness challenge, a new sport or a fun class, just go out and try. Keeping variety in your training through the winter will also help with overall wellness and athleticism.

We all have a hard time getting through the long winter months. I enjoy getting outside when I can to go for a walk/run/stairs to refresh my mind.The Edmonton river valley is a great place to explore and bring some excitement into the long winter days.