Well, 2020 is the year that seems to go on forever! However, in some cases, it went too fast. You thought you were going to lose the quarantine weight gain when summer came. But now it’s almost winter and you’re worried about gaining more.
Winter is a tough time to stay in shape. You’re inside more because it’s cold. The days are shorter. And the food is delicious! However, there are some ways to reduce winter weight gain. Or you may prevent it from happening entirely. Let’s look at some ways.
Get Plenty of Sunlight
There are many reasons why you should get some sunshine during winter. And preventing weight gain is one of them! But with the days getting shorter, it can be harder to get enough sunlight. This can increase depression and make it harder to sleep — two things that can have a negative impact on your dieting plan. If possible, get as much sunlight as you can. Bundle up and go outdoors! The Cleveland Clinic suggests trying bright-light therapy sun lamps if you have to.
Be Mindful of What You Eat and Drink
It’s easy to pig out across the winter holidays. Halloween candy, booze, pumpkin pie, the list goes on. The occasional treat or big dinner is not going to cause weight gain. But winter is a season where it’s easy to fall down a slippery slope. Keep counting the calories and spacing out cheat days. If you’re drinking, remember that alcohol has lots of calories. Instead of drinking some spiked eggnog, maybe settle for a 100-calorie seltzer.
Try Working Out at Home
Maybe there’s no gym where you live. Or you’re afraid to go because of catching the flu. It can be hard to get in a good workout when it’s cold outside. Luckily, there are plenty of exercises you can do at home that can be just as beneficial.
Purchase Workout Equipment for Home
For an intense workout, aerobic videos can get you only so far when you’re at home. You may want to buy some workout equipment such as dumbbells, jump rope, an exercise bike, etc. However, you may soon realize that the cost for these goods can add up. Luckily, there are some ways for you to save money on equipment, such as:
- Buy used. By going to your local thrift shop, you may be able to find some workout equipment for cheap. You also can look to Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.
- Look for sales. Be it for Black Friday/Cyber Monday season or another sale, it can help you save big.
- Look for flexible pieces of workout equipment. For example, instead of spending money on a bunch of dumbbells, you can get a water dumbbell that is flexible with how much it weighs.
Bundle Up and Run
When the temperatures start to drop, it can be a little intimidating to go outside and run. However, you do have to remember that when you run, your body heats up. Combine that with a good coat, and you should be feeling warm enough when you go and run. With fewer people at parks, you’ll be social distancing as well.
Get Plenty of Sleep
Another thing you have to think about when you are trying to lose weight is to sleep well. For most people, it’s about 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Not getting enough can lead to weight gain and less energy to spend. Sometimes, we have a harder time sleeping during wintertime because of depression and because of the lack of sunlight. Not to mention, avoiding exercise can make it harder to sleep. If you are having trouble, improve your sleep hygiene. Unwind before you sleep and avoid things that can keep you awake, such as checking your phone all the time. If you are still having trouble sleeping, you should speak to a doctor.
Talk to a Therapist
Winter can be a hard time to stay disciplined. In many cases, you may want to get some outside help. While speaking to a nutritionist is a smart move, another thing you should do is talk to a therapist. If you are having a hard time eating healthily due to depression or having trouble controlling your eating, therapy may be able to help.
Online therapy resources like BetterHelp can make it easier as well.
Don’t Worry too Much about Winter Weight Gain
With all that said, we are only human. Gaining a few pounds in winter is inevitable sometimes. In the end, worrying about winter weight gain too much can ironically make it harder on your waistline. That is why it’s important for you to have some balance. Be mindful, not worried. By focusing on the here and now and trying not to worry about the future of your waistline, you can live a happier and healthier lifestyle.
In good health,