Curing The Winter Blues

Curing The Winter Blues

Do you have the winter blues? Do you feel fat and lethargic? Has your nutrition slipped? Is your exercise plan faltering? Are you unmotivated to workout? Serious cases of Seasonal Affect Disorder (SAD) need medical treatment but most of us just get a bit demotivated and a few simple tips can snap you out of it.

Good news! The winter solstice was a month ago which means that every day is getting longer now. Every day puts us closer to spring and summer and NOW is the time to plan for summer, not in May. Here are three ways you can snap yourself out of the winter blues and jump start your training for summer.

1) Purification. Have a purification period to signify that your nutritional sins of the winter are behind you and you are on the road to beach weather. To purify your system, for 48 hours, eat nothing but fresh vegetables, legumes, fresh fruit and drink only water. During this purification period, decide what your body will look like six months from now on June 20 at the start of summer. Find a picture that is a achievable but ambitious goal and hang it on your refrigerator door. Make a nutritional plan and workout plan to get you to your goal. You will be amazed how good you feel at the end of the 48 hours. Your cleansed system will make you feel better as will knowing what you are going to achieve and having a plan to get there.

2) Light therapy.  Get a light box! This is a great way to improve your mood if you are afflicted with SAD. You can get a cheap one from your drug store.  Bed tanning probably helps too but because of the cancer risk, its not the best idea. If you like the warmth of tanning in the winter but are afraid of cancer, consider just using heat lamps.

3) Reset your nutrition.  Monitor your caloric intake carefully for one week! Its natural to be less physically active in the winter because of the difficulty of outdoor exercise. Just for a week, monitor every calorie you eat and then compare that to what my calorie calculator says you should be consuming. With just a week of calorie counting, most people develop an intuitive feel of how much they should be eating and can continue to eat the proper portions to keep their fat loss on track.

4) Cardio! Get your cardio, its the number one most important exercise for shaking the winter blues.  If you workout at home you probably dont have access to a stationary bike or treadmill, but fear not, there are great home alternatives!  Consider jumping rope, doing burpees, or making your own little 90’s style step class to your favorite music!  Snow and ice are no excuse to skip cardio!
When are you going to snap out of the winter blues?   I started my purification period today :)

30 thoughts on “Curing The Winter Blues”

  1. Great topic!
    It took a a while, but i have improved my attitude a lot lately, much due to youtube and the “ted talks” good food and scooby-snacks(pourage and whey) together with a great workout plan. Every morning i just deside that this is going to be a great day!
    Some inspiration to get in a great mood:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TeFqGrevf0s
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9cGdRNMdQQ
    Now i’m bothering the whole office and everyone seems a bit happier and are giving me energy and positive attitude back. This helps a lot now in wintertime.

    Oh, by the way i live in Sweden and work in a dark office building. I dont see the sun during weekdays ;).

  2. Just recently I started feeling the effects of SAD, particularly last year when we had a lot of cold overcast weather here in S. Calif. Thank goodness this year has had it’s share of sunny warmer days. My daily 2.5 mile uphill walks help keep me “up” as well.

  3. Scooby, I just wanted to say thank you. About 4 years ago I was tipping the scale at 300 pounds. I was strong (very strong) but way to heavy as well. I managed to drop 100 pounds through diet and excersize. The only thing that I didn’t understand was where all my muscle went. I now know that I wasn’t loosing it slow enough. I ate all whole grains and lot’s of lean meats and veggies. But my body burned off the muscle too. The reason I am thanking you, is because on your website I now have a good quality calorie calculator to help me build muscle and keep the fat off. It’s been very nice also to see the “at home” workouts i can do at my own home. Thanks so much!

  4. i used to lift weights and was a regular gym goer…but since last 5 months i havent worked out and my body’s badly out of shape……..how should i begin my workout routine again???

  5. This is great, I just wrote something on the Scooby Forum about how I was getting frustrated with winter. I’m going to do that purification, well actually I’m going to do that full program. I find that following a program like you have described helps you focus on whats important and creates optimism. It is a great coincidence to find this on your blog 2days after I was crying like a big baby on the forum on how winter is really getting to me.

  6. This is very true. I am a sunshine addict!! I have a hard time getting psyched up to move when I have to wear carhartt’s! I really like the idea of purification and restarting my fitness plan.

  7. I can attest to the SAD being an actual disorder. I’m living in Alaska and have had my mood affected in the winter unlike ever before. Also Scooby is right about exercise helping. If I’m not ice-skating cross country skiing snowshoeing or just plain walking I notice i’m very down and depressed. Keep up the good work!

    1. Lived there 5 years, in Fairbanks, and I totally concur on the mood. My first year was the worst, but I kept busy with snowboarding and that psyched me up for winter in general. Now I’m in Maryland, not far from DC, and it sucks. More sunlight, less good activities.

  8. Scooby you are an awesome person! Thank you for giving us great information without trying to sell us junk that is either bad for us or that we do not need. You are an inspiration of what it means to be a good human being.

  9. Curing The Winter Blues? What Winter Blues? Scooby, your web site sure makes a difference by helping your fans to be fit. When you feel fit and healthy the Winter Blues have no place,it’s a great gift. I always look forward to your latest updates.

    Great job Scoob !!!

  10. Good article Scooby,I have somewhat slipped personally..mainly because I kinda hit a plateu and motivation suffered so did everything,weather is disgusting where I live,never thought it could have also contributed to dimming my fire of will.

  11. Real athletes know no weather. I’m an MMA athlete and Scooby has helped me a lot, I certainly cant thank him enough. I continue training, day after day, month after month and through out the year. Under the rain or blazing heat it doesnt matter.

    1. Yeah I was with you on the weather thing until I moved to northern coastal Canada. We had to join a gym. I get hypothermi often. I’m a triathlete btw.i have no idea what a MMA is actually.

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