We’ve all seen those memes on social media, telling us to get out training in the winter, because that’s how we get our summer bodies fit and ready. And it sounds crazy – I mean, who enjoys dragging themselves to the gym in the cold, dark mornings, especially when we can get away with baggy, woolly jumpers to hide the results of Christmas feasting? Surely we can leave it till a little bit later…
However, in reality, it’s really not at all crazy because, despite every magazine issued in May sharing ‘the secret’ for a fit body by your holiday, I’m sorry to say it doesn’t quite work like that.
Whatever we do or do not do over the winter months – especially from January onwards – will determine how we look on that beach.
There are three points during the year when gyms and personal trainers, like me, get their biggest influxes of new clients:
- January – the result of New Year’s resolutions and post-Christmas attack
- May – the result of everyone booking their summer holidays and realising they have to bare all on the beach in 6-8 weeks
- September – the result of people overindulging on said beach and wanting to get back into shape!
The busiest influx is nearly always the pre-summer May influx, which shows how many of us wait till Beach Body Panic sets in to get into shape.
Yes, the idea of prancing around in a skimpy bikini on the beaches of Marbs or Ibiza in front of tanned and toned bodies is a great motivator. BUT 6-8 weeks really isn’t enough to get the body so many of us expect, contrary to what many ‘short-term quick fixes’ would have us believe.
Because the truth is, any quick fix is just that – short-term. The minute you get on that beach and start enjoying yourself again, your few weeks of exhaustion and deprivation begin to unwind, and it won’t be long before you’re back where you were before.
Short-term quick fixes are demanding and miserable, and rarely deliver what they promise. Abs really aren’t the be-all-and-end-all (trust me, I’ve been there!), and the plans are often so restrictive, you won’t be able to keep to them.
However, start your training a little earlier in the year and it’s a different (and much happier!) story. Here’s why:
- gets you the body you want over a slower, steadier timeframe,
- is much easier to stick to,
- means you can be more flexible with your diet, meaning no deprivation, (which makes me certainly very sad!),
- is more likely to achieve long-term results, and
- encourages you to build exercise into your daily lifestyle, rather than having it as a last-minute add-on.
- Learn to enjoy your training, enjoy the process of working towards that person you aspire to be and take the time to figure out what you love doing - you don't have to be lifting weights in the gym. How about try boxing or even spin a go!
So, those memes really are true – if you want the beach body of your dreams in the summer, you’re giving yourself a much better chance by training for it from January.
Which means if you need some motivation now – just keep thinking of that holiday or challenge in the far-off distance. It’ll be here quicker than you think!
I have already written a post on why there is no quick fix and also learning to love yourself - these will both enable you to work towards sustainable long term progress and results in becoming a happier, healthier and fitter you and the perfect time to start is now, in winter.