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5 Things You Can Do to Make the Most Out of Winter Time

5 Things You Can Do to Make the Most Out of Winter Time

Lo and behold, winter has arrived and you feel like your world has stopped. Gone were the days of sitting on the patio, letting the sun’s rays penetrate your already sun-drenched skin. The days of hiking, biking, and taking walks without worrying about putting on the extra layers of clothing are over. The cold weather has just set in.

Since winter is not something that we can control – and you cannot keep moving to warmer climate places every time winter hits, the worst thing that you can do is to complain about it. After all, we were always told not to worry about things that we cannot control. We just have to go with it, make the most out of it, and pretty soon, summer will be upon us again. If you are not a winter person, here are some things that you can do to make you get the most out of your winter season:

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1. It’s a good time to learn something new indoors

During summer time, we just get so busy. We are always out and about enjoying the outdoors. When winter hits, we suddenly find ourselves stuck inside the comforts of our houses, wanting more of the warmth that our heaters and fireplaces provide. While indoors, why not take advantage of this by learning something new that can be done indoors? Examples of these are learning a new language, learning to sew, practicing your golf swings with the help of a computer, learning a new musical instrument or learning how to paint. Pretty soon, it will be warm enough to go out again and you might lose the motivation to learn what you could have learned during the winter season.

2. Movie marathons and reading binges are not a bad idea

What can be a better day to lounge in front of the TV with a hot cocoa drink or to curl up with a good book that takes you on an adventure? A cold, cold day outdoors is a good day to stay in and do all of these. Watching movies and reading books can make us learn a lot of things that we wouldn’t have encountered if we didn’t watch that movie or read that book with really good reviews. Who said staying home means that you can’t be transported to another place with the help of a television or a book?

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3. Learn a winter sport

Skiing, snowboarding, skating and snowmobiling. Winter time is a once a year opportunity to go and get registered for classes to learn these wonderful winter sports. They not only make you a more well-rounded, interesting person, they also help get you out of the house and get you moving to fight off those winter blues and promote good health. What is even better is it gives you the opportunity to meet new people even during winter time when most people are indoors.

4. Enjoy the winter activities

What about sledding or sleigh riding at night while gazing up at the stars? Or shoe skiing for that extra workout? All those are great winter activities that will make your winter time more memorable. Not only that, you also get to check off those winter activities that some people have on their bucket lists.

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5. Use this time to reflect

Some animals hibernate during winter time. You can do that too, meaning you can use this time to let your mind be in a quiet environment and reflect on things that you cannot reflect on when the list of summer activities start piling up. Use this long and cold winter season to create a better you, know yourself better, and find out more about what direction you want your life to take.

Any season goes by fast. And each season is unique in what opportunities and activities they present to us. Since life is short and time is fleeting, do make the most out of any season that passes you by and be thankful for yet, another one of it.

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Sarah Bonander

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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