Breaking a Sweat Despite the Snow
As the leaves fall so does the temperature, making the already impossible task of getting in shape even harder. It’s just a matter of time before it’s too cold to take a walk, let alone a jog, so it’s time to take matters into your own hands. Workout doesn’t mean you have to go outside or to the gym. Just a few simple tweaks in your everyday life can put you on the fast track to a bikini bod before the first snowflake falls.
Believe it or not, eating more frequently throughout the day is more beneficial than cutting down. Small snacks spaced out by a couple of hours keeps you satisfied and avoids the all-too-easy evening gorge or late night treats. Less calories may sound like less weight gain, but starving from breakfast to dinner throws your body into survival mode: turning all the food you eat into fat and storing it for safekeeping. Instead of three big meals - okay let’s be real, the majority of us don’t eat breakfast, so two - eat six small meals. And when I say meals, I mean a small bowl of almonds and a banana, or some hummus and a plate of veggies. It may seem excessive to eat every three hours, but in the long run, you end up eating less. Just make sure you pair at least four of those meals with a tall glass of water.
Tips and tricks: The key to curbing hunger is protein and hydration. Protein doesn’t have to mean meat; in fact, it’s preferred that it isn’t meat. Edamames, nuts, beans, and even hemp seeds have a high amount of protein. A quick Google search will show you just how many options are out there for a healthy portion of protein.
My personal trick for finding healthy recipes is to watch cooking shows, vegan ones specifically. I’m not vegan by any means - despite my disapproval of the dairy industry, I haven’t yet shaken my addiction to mac and cheese - but starting with the basics makes it easy to build up a nutritious meal plan. Following every instruction is for sissies; you’re allowed to modify them since it makes the food personal and that much more enjoyable to eat.
I know it seems obvious, but water is the key to a healthy lifestyle and the simplest way to kick your metabolism into high gear. And when you ice that water, it causes your body to burn calories. While it’s only about eight calories per glass, every little bit helps. You’re supposed to drink eight glasses a day anyways, so a few extra steps to the ice maker won’t kill you. If anything, it’s good exercise.
Tips and tricks: The biggest issue of drinking water is the lack of variety. I know you’re expecting me to suggest lemon water, but we all know a little citrus can only do so much. Infuse your water with any fruits or vegetables you see fit; mix it up every day or every meal. Plus, putting things like ginger, tumeric, or even cinnamon can counteract the acidity of your morning coffee.
Unless you live for fitness, you probably fall under the majority of people who hate working out. I get it. Working out doesn’t just mean taking an hour out of your day. You not only have to schedule the time to get sweaty, but then you also need to cool down, and stretch, and shower, AND drink water? It’s more exhausting than the exercise itself. But it doesn’t have to be.
Crossfit may have a plethora of problems, but the concept of high variety, high intensity workouts is something to consider. Even just a six minute sweat-fest is better than nothing, and you can do it in the comfort of your own home. And if that doesn’t float your boat, go for the sneaky route. Do some squats while you brush your teeth, have your afternoon snack standing up, or just do some butt clenches in your office chair.
Tips and tricks: YouTube. You’re on it anyways, so you might as well look up something useful that doesn’t have to do with Pinterest hacks or makeup tutorials. Channels like Adam Rosante and Blogilates provide free, quick, and easy workouts that require nothing but a yoga mat. You might doubt the power of simple arm movements, but after five minutes of arm circles and weird prayer hands, you’ll be sore and screaming at Cassey’s chipper face.
Being active all the time allows you more wiggle room on your diet and even warrants a cheat day. Everyone is lazy by nature, but training yourself to do a little each day will leave you craving more, feeling better, and looking better. Good luck