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Monday, March 10, 2014

The winter "cushion"

Time to be brutally honest.  The past few weeks, I've started feeling a little blumpier.  Clothes have been a little tighter and a little less comfortable.  It happens.  We all have weight fluctuations.  And it can be depressing, especially when you think back to how those clothes fit in the fall when you were just coming off of 1/2 marathon training.  Running is my go-to "want to get in shape" plan, but of course we got more snow last week which only thwarted all my dreams.

This morning I was determined to run, even it meant on the treadmill.  You know I'm desperate if I'm willing to jump on a treadmill!  As I was getting ready, I was chatting with a friend who confessed she was there for the same reason...to run off these pesky winter pounds.

Our conversation got me thinking.  It just doesn't make sense.  We are people who work out every day.  And not a 'stroll down the street' work out, but like a 'drenched in sweat for an hour' people, yet we're still gaining weight.  It's a defeating feeling when you're already doing what you should to lose weight, but are gaining weight.

I decided to do a little research why we gain weight in the winter.  Here's what I found:

10 reasons we gain weight in the winter:

1.  Our instincts tell us to hibernate; to be more slothful and eat more
2.  Sickness.  We feed a cold and are not able to exercise
3.  Stress.  Higher bills, holidays, snow days.
4.  We eat more when we're cold
5.  We eat more "comfort" food
6.  We eat more at holidays...thank you winter for Thanksgiving, Christmas and Valentine's
7.  We eat more to comfort winter blues
8.  Gaining weight is contagious!  If others around you are gaining weight, you are more likely to join their party
9.  Winter fruits and veggies are not as appealing
10.  Lower levels of Vitamin D reduces fat breakdown and triggers fat storage


So, if you are in my winter "cushion" boat, know that you are not alone.  Spring will eventually be here!  Dinners will be grilled and days will be full of playing outside.  The cushion will come off, but for now, go enjoy a few more Girl Scout cookies :)

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