Beat the Winter Blues

Lauren Frahn shares tips on how to keep yourself motivated, fit, and happy throughout the winter months.

January 18, 2013
Beat the Winter Blues

The excitements of the holidays are officially over, and many of us are looking forward to the first signs of spring. If you’re stuck in the blahs of January's icy grips, these tips could help you put on a warm and glowing smile.

With the winter upon us, something to be aware of is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD (the abbreviation is ironic, huh?), is a form of depression that occurs most frequently during the winter months. Its symptoms include: hopelessness, increased appetite/weight gain (and not due to the holiday splurging!), increased sleep, less energy and ability to concentrate, loss of interest in work/activities, unhappiness, and irritability. If you experience any of these symptoms this time of year, you’re not alone. While you may not be able to completely prevent this from happening, you can do something about it to brighten your mood. SAD is a real condition, but there’s no reason to stay under the weather. Here are some ways to help find your inner sunshine again:

Make sure that you are getting enough sleep
> If you find that you are cranky and hard to please, it may just because you are not getting enough ZZZ’s. Working out too late in the day can negatively impact your ability to fall (and stay) asleep. Plan your workouts accordingly and get them done earlier in the day so that you are able to fall asleep at a reasonable hour.

Clean up your diet
>Make sure that you are getting in the vitamins and healthy foods your body needs. When you nourish your body with the healthy energy, it can function properly.

> Push yourself to stay active, even if you feel tired and lazy. Pushing yourself to get in a good workout can do wonders for your mood. That’s because your body will release feel good endorphins that help get you feeling back on top.

Do activities that you love and enjoy
Just because baby, it’s cold outside, does not mean that you are inhibited from doing what you love. Do you love swimming? Find an indoor pool. Love gardening? Well, plants and flowers grow inside, too, so get planting. Do you miss being outdoors? Take up an outdoor activity like skiing or snowshoeing. The key is to not give in to the blah feelings. Yes, it will feel difficult at first, but you can lift your mood higher.

Remember, it is okay that you happen to feel blue, but getting yourself back to being a happy is only up to you.

Best wishes and blessings!