Staying healthy should be a year-round thing — yes, that includes fall and winter — but let’s not front, it's hard to find motivation to keep going to the gym or going for a run in those colder months. We sat down with Jasmine Nesi, the co-founder and COO of RunGrl — before her flight to Europe to run a marathon — to get some tips on working out in the winter time and staying motivated to do so.
Nesi recently moved from Washington, D.C. to New York City, so she knows a thing or two about working out in harsh temperatures. She does admit that running is hard despite the time of year, but finding the right tools and friends can help make fall and winter runs a little easier.
Find a friend:
"You need someone to hold you accountable when it comes to working out. Have a friend that you know will push you and that knows you’ll push them. On days where you know you don’t want to work out and you end up getting a text message from your friend — one that’s counting on you — it makes you feel bad to ditch them," says Nessi.
Working out with a friend is also more fun — whether you’re long distance running like Nesi or hitting up a spin class with Brianna Owens — it’s guaranteed to be a bit of a better time with a friend to have fun with. Pro tip: schedule a brunch, lunch or dinner for afterward to keep you motivated. After all, you both deserve it!
"Also it’s hard to get back into working out if you’ve taken time off — there have been times where we take December and January off but getting back into it in February is awful. So we try to work through it as best we can. I always say it takes half the time you took off to get back into it, so if you took a month off, you’ll start to feel okay two weeks after getting stared again," shares Nesi on accountability.
Not everyone lives where it’s sunny and warm all the time, which means we endure winter a little differently and let’s be real, who’s trying to run in 15℉? Actually, you are, so let’s get into Nesi’s advice for running in low temperatures.
"Layer up! That’s really is, just layer up. When I run in the winter, I’m in warm leggings and maybe even another pair of leggings, and sweaters and gloves and socks and hats — the whole nine. The truth is that it’s not easy but take it slowly, especially in the winter, and be sure that you’re dressed for it all. Even if it means getting new gear, it might even make you want to workout even more with some new clothes, so go ahead and treat yourself, but go work out in it afterward."
Slow and Steady:
"Whether you’re new to running or not, it’s important to take things slow. When it comes to the winter time, the cold affects your body so it’s better to not look at the time you’re taking to run your miles, just do it at your own pace," says Nesi.
If you were needing an excuse to shop, let it be working out in the fall and winter. I mean, who doesn’t enjoy new clothes? It’s also nice to feel your best when you’re working out. “New clothes make me want to workout, I want to look fly in whatever I’m working out in, so I’ll occasionally use the winter time as an excuse to get some shopping done,” admits Nesi.
Think about your health:
"It’s important to remember our health at all times. At RunGrl, we want exercise to be inclusive and we want to paint a representative picture for the younger generation. Exercise and wellness matters — we want younger girls and women to take cross country, expand and make use of the possibilities that are available and encourage them to start thinking about their health earlier," shares Nesi.
Now, what was that you were saying about working out in the winter?
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