I am 100% guilty of using winter as an excuse to stay warm, inside, and well, unmotivated to work out. It’s the weather, the season, the hot chocolate… you name it.

The good news is, by the time the New Year’s resolution slightly starts to wear off, it’s March – and you know what that means: spring, which is immediately followed by summer, which equals bathing suit season.

If you’re like me and start to fall off the work-out wagon by mid-February, fear not. I have 5 ways to get yourself off of the couch and back onto your workout plan.

1. Buy some new workout clothes
This might sound a little strange, but think about it. When you buy something new, you’re excited to use or wear it, right? The same goes for workout clothes! Go and get some bright colored pants or tops, and get yourself back to the grind.

2. Make a new playlist
One thing that motivates me is putting new songs on my workout playlist (and getting rid of some old ones, too). I love working out to music, so adding songs that get me pumped up and ready to go are a surefire way to get me moving.

3. Get a workout buddy
You are not alone this time of year, dear workout friend. It seems like everyone is on the border of panic mode to get their beach bods in check. Don’t be afraid to ask a co-worker or friend if they want to join you in getting in shape for summer. Nothing is better than working out with someone else; it not only motivates you to get going, but pushes you to go above and beyond your usual limits.

4. Invest in a new piece of workout equipment
The best way to get into a workout routine is to start with at least 30 minutes a day, and I’m sure some of you don’t want to run all the way to the gym for just a half an hour. Why not save yourself some time and money and bring the gym to your home? I love the elliptical trainer for this, and you can find some of the best ellipticals for the home at the Yowza Fitness webpage.

5. Track your progress
This one is the key. A lot of times we feel like we aren’t making any progress when working out, and so we give up. But this is usually not the case. One way to track your progress is by taking a picture of yourself every week. Over time, you’ll see that a picture really does say a thousand words, not a mirror. Another way of seeing how far you’ve come is by utilizing programs, such as myLiveLight, built into Yowza treadmills and elliptical machines.

And there you have 5 simple, but highly effective, ways to get back in the game, and feel confident while enjoying the amazing summer that’s just around the corner.