I hear from my patients all the time that moving their bodies is hard when it’s cold outside. I can relate, who wants to go to the gym when there’s ice and sleet outside?! Here is my (slow) exercise evolution from the perspective of a non-athletic woman. The take-home message is to surround yourself with people who are better than you at exercise. Enjoy the read!

  • I started running: (slow jogging) in my last year of university and NEVER thought I could run a 5k. I joined a Running Room and did the run-walk method. It was cheap, accessible, and I honestly thought it was one of the ‘healthiest’ forms of exercise.
  • Sprint triathlon: Between degrees I lived and worked in Calgary. My friend was a triathlete and taught me triathlon training basics. I finished my one and only sprint tri when I was 23. It was fun! Without my friend’s accountability and expertise, it would never have entered my mind to do anything like this.
  • 1/2 marathon: During naturopathic medical school I was jogging semi-regularly but had a hectic schedule. In my last year, I had a running buddy and we both signed up for the Toronto Waterfront 1/2 marathon. Training felt like a slugfest but we were accountable to each other. I never thought I could run more than 5 km about 5 years earlier! Crazy what we can do when we are consistent and patient with a goal.
  • Burnout’ phase: After graduating, building a career, moving, and Covid, things have been hit and miss. I couldn’t muster up stamina to run anymore. Enter Crossfit and realizing that I don’t have to do an hour of constant cardio in order to be strong and fit. Everything about lifting weights feels awkward but I’m learning and maybe even improving my technique a little.

How to exercise this Winter?

Over the years I realize I’ve only accomplished an exercise goal with somebody there to coach and guide me. Here are some things to start doing this Winter:

  1. Surround yourself with other people who are doing cool things and are better than you at a skill. You will pick up on their energy and mindset through osmosis!
  2. Have a movement goal instead of a weight loss goal. What is something that you want to accomplish with your fitness? I’m working towards a pull-up in 2024.
  3. Foolproof your exercise. Keep the gym bag in the car, pack the extra snacks, exercise immediately after work, and buy sneakers/clothes that you need. Make things more convenient so you actually do it.

Our team at Roots to Branches wants to support your movement goals in the cold weather and beyond.  Book an appointment with one of our team members HERE.