As the days get shorter, the evenings get darker, and the Holidays approach it's easy to find lots of reasons to avoid the gym.  While understandable, the holiday season should not be an excuse to undo all the progress you've made throughout the year.  Here are a few things that can help you to stay motivated.

1. Set a goal

It's a lot easier to feel good about time spent in the gym if you clearly understand what you're trying to accomplish.  Whether your goal is to fit into a smaller size dress for the company holiday party, to make weight for an upcoming competition, to move up a t-shirt size prior to the 2015 Open, to improve your health markers prior to your next physical, or something entirely different, it's important to know what you're trying to accomplish.  If your goal is important to you, and it's clear that you're making progress towards achieving it, it's much easier to continue the healthy habits that are getting you there.

2. Schedule the important things in your life

If you tend to become reactionary as life gets busy, the holidays will create endless opportunities for you to get overwhelmed and behind in your priorities.  Developing a clear understanding of what's important to you will help you fit the key things into your day before you get swept away by all the distraction that can sometimes abound.  If you know when the important stuff is going to get done, you won't be as likely to get derailed by an unimportant distraction.

3. Track your progress

One of the cool things about CrossFit training is its tendency to make you feel out of shape no matter how in shape you become.  It continuously tests all participants at the level of their tolerance, so it's easy to forget that we are making progress.  By tracking your workouts, your PRs, and your progress generally, it's easier to see that the time you're putting in at the gym is actually resulting in something.  If it's not, you'll likely be feeling less motivated (but you'll also have a record of what hasn't been working, so you'll be able to analyze your program and change something).

4. Protect your gainz

If you've worked hard and consistently through the first 10 months of the year (or since you started CrossFitting), it's likely you've made some real progress in terms of strength, fitness, and body composition.  Those of us who have been doing this a long time know that diligent effort applied consistently over time is the key to lasting results.  Working really hard for 10 months and undoing it by eating whatever treats cross our paths, or letting our gym routine fall apart is a really good way to dissapoint ourselves come January when we realize it's basically time to start over.  Learning to enjoy the holidays without overindulging is an important balance in striving for a healthier life.

WOD for 10-18-16:

Alternating EMOM For 5 Rounds (10 Minutes):

MINUTE 1: 3 Hang Power Cleans

MINUTE 2: 1 Muscle-up + 4 Strict Ring Dips

 

Climb to a top set on the hang power cleans, re-setting to the hang between reps (try not to drop from the top).  For the muscle-up to ring dips practice quality reps and full dip range of motion - if dips are easy make them strict, otherwise kip as needed (either way make sure you're stable and under control on the high rings).  

 

-then-

 

For Time:

40 Calorie Row

30 Pistols, alternating

20 Hang Power Cleans @ 185/125 lbs

10 Muscle-ups