5 Tips To Help You Stay Active all Year Round

Welcome to February - the shortest month of the year that can feel like the longest.  Daylight hours are fleeting and motivation to stay active often drops along with the temps.  New Year’s resolutions begin to fade and skipping the gym for that extra hour in bed is more appealing than ever.

I’ve had my fair share of those moments - indulging in that extra glass of wine or finishing my children’s leftovers (after thoroughly enjoying my own meal.)  And count me guilty of sleeping in instead of making it to yoga class on more than one occasion.  But I’ve learned a few tricks over the years to help power me through these lags.  So when JCPenney invited me to share some of my favorite tips for staying motivated year-round with shoppers in Kansas City, I was more than happy to open up about this relevant topic.

Here are a few of the go-to tips that I shared at the JCPenney event:

 Filling my shopping cart at JCPenney

Filling my shopping cart at JCPenney

1.       Bribe Yourself:  This trick is one I learned back when shopping made up more of my workout routine than a regular yoga practice.  Treat yourself to something fun that you’ll use especially at the gym or yoga studio.   It doesn’t have to be pricey – it can be anything as small as a new reusable water bottle, to as exciting as a new outfit or gym bag.  For example, here are some fun, inexpensive items I picked up at JCPenney that make the perfect little ‘bribe’ gifts to myself: 

 Kansas City love

Kansas City love

2.       Find a Workout in an Unlikely Place: Some days just don’t have enough hours in them, and getting a solid `workout in just isn’t happening.  On these days, make an effort to be active outside of the gym or studio.  For example, take the stairs instead of the elevator, or park your car further away from the entrance of the supermarket.  Maybe take some extra time walking your dog, or do a few squats while you’re on the phone with your friend. There’s always a way to squeeze in some extra exercise no matter where you are or what you’re doing.

3.       Fake it ‘til you Make it: Studies show that we can actually convince ourselves to exhibit certain emotions – for example – having more confidence and less anxiety - by simply going through the motions repeatedly until we begin to truly have those feelings naturally.  We can do the same thing with a healthy lifestyle – go through the motions of eating more nutritious foods and less unhealthy ones, be more active, etc. – until it becomes a natural way of living. 

4.       Friends are Priceless:  Sometimes no matter how much self-convincing we do, it still isn’t enough to get us to make the healthy choice.  That’s where our friends come into play.  Having a workout buddy or a yoga partner will not only motivate you to make it to the gym or studio, but will also make your sessions more fun and enjoyable.

5.       Make your Home an Inviting place to Workout: There will be days when making it to the gym or studio is just not going to happen - bad weather, work obligations, or other factors may make it impossible to get there.  Having a dedicated space at home can be a lifesaver during these times.  Even a small corner of a room with a mat and some props (weights, blocks, straps, etc) will help you stay active on those days.  And there are countless resources with knowledgeable teachers – online classes or DVDs – to guide you through a session.

 Gift Bags at the JCPenney Event

Gift Bags at the JCPenney Event

The event, held at the Oak Park Mall in Overland Park, Kansas turned out to be a blast. I was touched to see that many of the participants truly appreciated the pointers I had to share.  I had such a wonderful time and I am so happy I was able to partner with JCPenney for this fun experience!

Here are a few more photos from my trip to Kansas City and the event at JCPenney. Remember you can purchase any of items you see shown above at: http://chtp.co/shopjcpenney       #SoWorthIt

 Chatting with local shoppers at JCPenney

Chatting with local shoppers at JCPenney

 Hanging out in the 'Glass Labyrinth' exhibit at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City

Hanging out in the 'Glass Labyrinth' exhibit at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City