It’s the middle of winter in Australia. And it’s dark in the morning and it’s dark in the evening and it’s cold … did I mention that….?
When your alarm goes off in the morning, you want to stay in bed. It’s warm!
Sometimes you want to get up. You want to get out of bed and start your day. You want to go for a run. But you just keep hitting snooze.
So what do you do?
Well, look, there’s heaps of fancy stuff out there that promises to help. From sunlight lamps that help your circadian rhythm, to alarm clocks you have to crash tackle to turn off.
I’m sure those things work.
But I’m also sure you can get the same thing done for free.
So here we go, my six tips for keeping your life on track in the middle of winter.
Listen below (or scroll down to read):
#1 Get enough sleep
If you get into bed at midnight and you set your alarm for 4:30am for pilates, you’re setting yourself up to fail. Sleep is good for us. It’s good for our bodies. It’s the time when our bodies repair, it supports brain development. It helps with cardiac function and memory. It’s good for our mental and emotional health. Sleep is just as beneficial for your health as a balanced diet and exercise routine. So make sure you’re getting enough sleep.
They reckon like 7-9 hours of sleep is what an adult needs.
#2 Take into account your sleep inertia
I’ve talked about this on this podcast before. It’s the amount of time it takes you to wake up. Some people have sleep inertia for 15 minutes, some people it can last up to an hour. So if you’re inertia hangs around for an hour like mine – you’ve got to wake up an hour earlier than before you need to leave. Seeking light first thing in the morning, artificial or real, tells our brain that it’s time to get moving. So put a lamp on, open the blinds. Sleep inertia is IMPORTANT…. don’t dismiss this.
#3 Get an alarm
You can have the standard one, or a nice gentle one.
The only thing it must be …. is not next to your bed! Cos that’s too easy to turn off! So put one in the bathroom or in the hallway. That way you have to get out of bed and take a few steps to turn it off.
This is also important.
When I tell people this their first reaction is “Oh but my phone is on charge next to my bed”. Bad excuse. Move your charger. Move your phone. You’ll be fine with it not next to you for the night.
#4 Plan some special events
In winter, things tend to ramp down. Sports go on hold, you’re less likely to go out and see friends. When we’re not doing things that EXCITE us, it can be easy to lose motivation. So consciously make the effort to do things that sparks enthusiasm. What team winter sports are on offer? Try that hot yoga class you’ve been saying you will for years. Do hip-hop fitness (yes, that’s a thing). Schedule a coffee date with your friend after the gym. That leads us too…
We all love games right? We all love a bit of healthy competition? Putting game mechanics into non-game environments make things EXCITING, which we know from my previous tip is important! They rely on reward systems to encourage certain behaviours. You could do something like a winter step challenge, with the reward being a dinner out at your favourite restaurant.
You mioght want to join my free, three day Learn to Run challenge! Having something that’s fun and new is a great way to kick things back into gear.
Join us here:
We just spoke about how rewards keep you motivated, but you don’t have to do a challenge to reward yourself. You can reward yourself everyday. When I wake up instead of hitting snooze, I have a big old cup of coffee.
Let me leave you with this….
It’s normal to feel less motivated in winter! Don’t beat yourself up if you’re not as active as you usually are. And if you want to join me in something new, join my free challenge. You’ll meet hundreds of other women all kickstarting their fitness, and learning to run (most for the very first time) in a safe, and supportive online space.
Join us here: