Motivating yourself for the gym in the winter?

It's cold out.
I'm talking negative wind chills right now, going into tomorrow.
I know I should go to the gym.
However, the last thing I can think of wanting to do is going outside, bundled up, with sweaty hair and skin after a workout, and facing the 5 minute walk to my car from the gym in sub zero temps.

How do you motivate yourself to go to the gym, even when it is super cold?
The thought of working out and then going outside into 0-20 degree temps the next few months makes me cringe.


  • tomatoey
    tomatoey Posts: 5,459 Member
    edited January 2015
    Get a super warm coat, first. Then, also get a sweatshirt with a hoodie to protect it from your sweat (and obv keep your hair and face protected). Also get warm boots, gloves, etc. The coat especially is key. I finally got one that could cope with the temps in my area and all of a sudden find myself way more likely to leave the house and just stay mobile.

    I go because working out makes me feel good, and I want to feel good. That said, I'd work out at home if it were an option for me (need bike, pool etc).

    North Face and Land's End do warm coats fyi. Look for 550+ fill down.
  • Krueger92
    Krueger92 Posts: 109 Member
    Its beyond cold here in MI right now. Whats keeps me motivated? The fact that I don't ever want to go back to the way I used to be!
  • dakotababy
    dakotababy Posts: 2,401 Member
    I live up in Canada, so the bulk of my year is in -20C to -30C temps, maybe even colder with windchills attached to that.

    You just do it.
  • cheshirecatastrophe
    cheshirecatastrophe Posts: 1,395 Member
    Do you have the option to shower at the gym? Or at least wash your face, towel off, and change into dry underwear and sports bra?

    I also let myself listen to music between home-gym-home (I walk or bike) when the temp drops below 10F.

    However, tomorrow morning we will have whiteout conditions with dangerous wind chill, so it is bike trainer day. :s Maybe some kind of home workout would work, on the days you can't pull it together?
  • twrobbel
    twrobbel Posts: 132 Member
    I'm in Cleveland, double digit negative temps here. I find that I can only feel warm when I work out and break a sweat. So I think about how nice and warm I will be. I also find that the cold outdoor temp doesn't bother me as much after a work out. I was able to even stand outside and pump gas and not feel the frigid temp. I agree with the other post about getting a warm does make a big difference. Sometimes I will even wear a fleece jacket under my down coat.
  • hill8570
    hill8570 Posts: 1,466 Member
    edited January 2015
    The only thing that gets me to the gym at all is that all the mountain bike trails are covered in snow, and I'm pacing the floors like a caged animal. Even a gym workout is better than sitting at home, and the ski hill is too far away to hit more than once a week.
  • segacs
    segacs Posts: 4,599 Member
    I live in Canada, so it's not as though life just stops whenever it gets cold. Here in Montreal at the moment it's -26 with a windchill of -34. (That's Celsius; it translates to -15 with a windchill of -30 for you 'Mericans)

    You just do it, as other posters said. Same as going to work. I can't just decide to stay home from the office whenever it gets cold, so I can't just stay home from the gym either.
  • tomatoey
    tomatoey Posts: 5,459 Member
    Also: I promise myself I'll pick up a nice Earl Grey tea for the way home. I never actually do it on the days it's so cold I have to tell myself this (too cold lol - I walk to the gym), but it's a compelling enough idea to push me over the line if I'm wavering.
  • RebelDiamond
    RebelDiamond Posts: 188 Member

    Plus, exercise warms you the hell up :)
  • flabassmcgee
    flabassmcgee Posts: 659 Member
    If anything, it motivates me more so that I don't have to workout outside. :)
  • mrsmammahunter
    mrsmammahunter Posts: 221 Member
    I am the opposite, SUMMER makes me not want to go to the gym but i live in las vegas. 125 degrees outside hot. Sun goes down its a hot hot 90.
  • yoovie
    yoovie Posts: 17,127 Member
    i am one of the winter warriors.

    i see winter as my secret training period, where I am most serious.

    I see summer as the time of year where it's so easy to get in shape that everyone does it - but winter? winter is a challenge big enough for me to sink my teeth into.

    so i tell myself often that if a goal isnt at least a little daunting and scary to me, then I have made my goals too easy. They should be hard. Slaying dragons is HARD. Changing your life is HARD!

    this is the hardest time to be disciplined and therefore it is the training time of year that yields mad rewards.

    Karma is beautiful in the fitness world. You push hard when you most do not want to - and you are rewarded. You get up in the dark and go when no one else will? that's a hero - someone who does what needs to be done without support or an audience. You force yourself out of your warm cocoon of a bed so you can butterfly the frak up in the spring, am i right?
  • missiontofitness
    missiontofitness Posts: 4,074 Member
    Well, I'm going to put on my big girl yoga pants and go to the gym once these ridiculously cold temps are done by next week. Even being bundled up in two layers of everything with thick gloves couldn't protect me from freezing this morning on my walk to work!

    I might not be able to tolerate a -12 wind chill, but I should be able to tolerate 12 degree weather.

    So off to the gym I go starting Monday.
  • yesimpson
    yesimpson Posts: 1,372 Member

    Plus, exercise warms you the hell up :)


  • missiontofitness
    missiontofitness Posts: 4,074 Member

    Plus, exercise warms you the hell up :)

    I already have a summer body (took nine months, but I've just about got it!)
    I just have to maintain it now, haha. Preparing for and beginning hibernation is so tempting with these temps, though!
  • Alidecker
    Alidecker Posts: 1,262 Member
    I don't notice how cold it is when I leave the gym, I am hot and it doesn't feel so bad. I do have remote start on my car and I turn it on when I start the post workout stretch. That part is nice.
  • Myhaloslipped
    Myhaloslipped Posts: 4,317 Member
    My motivations: Cabin fever, fighting Seasonal Affective Disorder and the fact that spring and summer will be coming eventually. I love going to the gym on most days, but these things motivate me when I am feeling blah and sluggish.
  • La5Vega5Girl
    La5Vega5Girl Posts: 709 Member
    i hate winter, i hate cold.
    to motivate myself, i get up and stick to my routine. get to the gym...get to the mantra. even if i'm tired or it's a day when i'm not doing weights, i will go anyway and at least walk on the treadmill or something. if i skip a day, that's a pass to skip a week. LOL
  • eric_sg61
    eric_sg61 Posts: 2,925 Member
    It's -7 here and I workout in my uninsulated and unheated garage
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,552 Member
    I don't understand this honestly- get dressed- put on your sweats- beanie and sweatshirt- get in your car- and go workout.

    I understand not wanting to workout outside in crappy temps but we are talking about inside workouts.... it's inside. go workout. stop being a ninny.