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10 Ways to maintain your fitness this winter

By Faeza
11 May 2016

Winter fitness

Chilly dark mornings and evenings make it difficult to stick to a fitness plan. Even the most dedicated athletes find it a challenge.

Professional South African cyclist Ashleigh Moolman Pasio, who is training in preparation for Athletics in Rio, shares her top 10 strategies for staying fit during winter:

1. Set a goal

First and foremost, set yourself a goal. Find a race you would like to take part in or set yourself a weight loss goal.

2. Team up

Join a club or find yourself a training group. Sticking to your training program during the cold winter months is certainly much easier if you have training partners waiting for you. When the mornings get colder and dark, it is great to have a reason not to hit the snooze button.

3. Dress the part

Invest in quality winter training kit. As the saying goes, there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad choice of clothing.

There are many great winter training products on the market that will be sure to keep you warm during the colder months. They may be more expensive, but they are definitely worth every cent.

4. Lighten up

Invest in a good light for your bike or a head lamp if you’re a runner. With limited daylight in the winter months, having a good light will be motivation not to use the dark as an excuse not to train.

5. Mix things up

You don't have to cycle or run in the cold to stay fit. Use the winter months as a good opportunity to do some strength training in the gym and join a Pilates or yoga class.

6. Train indoors

Join a wattbike or indoor cycling studio. Cycling indoors can be fun if you use good quality equipment and you have a group to join.

7. Find yourself a coach

Having a training program to stick to can help to keep you going when motivation runs low.

8. Focus on quality rather than quantity

It is hard to go out for long training rides when it's cold, so use the weekdays to do your quality sessions and do long rides over the weekend when you can go out later and in groups.

9. Take a trip

If you can afford it, plan a cycling holiday in a different country in the northern hemisphere. Cycling touring is becoming more and more popular. There is no better way to see the world, than by bike and keep fit at the same time.

10. Watch out for comfort foods

Try to stay away from the comfort foods we often feel tempted to eat during the winter months. These food groups actually make you feel lethargic and tired. Sticking to healthy, wholefood choices make you feel energized and good about yourself. The comfort is only temporary, and in the long-term results in weight gain and frustration.

Source: All4Women