Winter Fit is a series where I interview Canadian fitness/outdoors bloggers and get a first hand look into how they stay fit and motivated during the long cold winter months.

This week, we’re talking to Charlotte, a blogger at From T-Rex to Tigress.  Charlotte is a fellow Girls Gone Sporty Ambassador who writes humorously about her active lifestyle.

Where do you live and what are your winters like?

Hello! My name is Charlotte and I live in Toronto, Ontario. I started my blog www.fromtrextotigress, to share my desire to transform my body, and become stronger and healthier along the way. The winters in Toronto can be very harsh. At times we don’t get a lot of snow (like Montreal or the Eastern seaboard), but we do experience extreme cold weather with bitter Northern winds. The air is also very dry this time of year.

What are your go-to activities?

I love weight training, but I also have many fitness apps on my tablet, such as The Nike Training App, The Sworkit app and The Fitness Games. Having these apps make fitting in a workout very convenient when I can’t make it to the gym.

 How do stay motivated in the dark, gloomy winter months to stick to a fitness routine?

Unfortunately, I suffer from seasonal affective disorder. The long, dark winters and little daylight can make me feel depressed. It took many years for me to realize that I NEED to exercise, especially during winter. From experience, I learned that I can get moody, over-weight and sedentary from my S.A.D, so activity is crucial. It makes me more alert, happier and keeps my body at a healthy weight. To stay motivated, I joined a running group with some ladies at work. We keep each other accountable, and always touch base in the morning to ensure we get in a run after work. Exercising with others is very helpful to stay on track. On my weight training days, I make sure that I go to the gym straight after work instead of going home first. This strategy avoids me going home and then making excuses, such as, “it’s too cold to leave the house.” Another tip is taking vitamin D. There is little sun exposure in the winter and a lack of nature’s vitamin D, so taking a D tablet daily is essential for me


Do you do any winter activities?

Shame on me! For a Canadian, I don’t participate in winter sports. As a child, I loved to skate at the local rink and toboggan, but as an adult I seem to have an aversion to the cold. Truth be told, Rachel of Bettylivin has inspired me to get out there and enjoy the season from her gorgeous winter photos on her blog.(Note from Rachel: Awwwwwwww) Her description of snowshoeing has made this one of my bucket list items. Hopefully it will snow soon, (and last) so I will get the chance.

Do you have a healthy comfort food recipe to share?

Yes, I do. I love my hubby Andy’s eggplant parm. It is cheesy, healthy and very comforting hot from the oven.

You will need:

  • One eggplant
  • Cooking oil
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 2 handfuls of grated low-fat cheddar
  • A small piece of a red onion
  • 2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
  •  1/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • Sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh, finely chopped rosemary


  1. Wash the outside of your eggplant thoroughly before cutting.
  2. Cut the eggplant in a little less than 1/4 of an inch circles. (thinly sliced)
  3. In a baking or Pyrex dish, coat the bottom with a one tablespoon of Purolivia cooking oil.
  4. Add a little (1 to 2 teaspoons) water to one can of tomato paste in a separate dish. Mix well until tomato paste is smooth and spreadable.
  5. Cover the bottom of the Pyrex dish with first layer of eggplant.
  6. Cover layer of eggplant with the tomato paste/water mixture.
  7. Sprinkle a handful of grated low-fat cheddar cheese on top.
  8.  Add another layer of eggplant, covered by another layer of tomato paste mixture. Follow with another layer of sprinkled cheddar cheese.
  9. Finish by topping with a few circles of chopped red onions, (a garnish serving), two teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil sprinkled on top and a sprinkle of fresh, grated parmesan. Sprinkle a dash of sea salt.
  10. As a final step to add more flavour, add a sprinkle of finely chopped fresh rosemary.
  11. Bake at 350 F for 30-35 minutes.

What advice would you give for someone struggling to get up and moving during the winter when hibernation mode sets in?

I know personally how rough winters can be, but they will be even harder if we are inactive. I think the best piece of advice is to utilize the buddy system. As I said above, friends can help to keep you accountable. Have an interest in Zumba, Spin or Yoga? Call a friend and ask them to join you. Carpool together and make it an evening out by having a tea, coffee or a glass of wine by a pub’s fire together to celebrate your new interest and to celebrate winter. Look ahead to something positive or rewarding or join a fun themed race. Think ahead of how good you will look and more importantly feel because you stayed active and got off the couch this winter.





  • fromtrextotigress March 4, 2015 at 5:17 pm

    Thanks for having me, Rachel. I’m beginning to see the positives of winter.

    • Betty LIVIN March 5, 2015 at 8:43 am

      Atta girl! When you live in Canada you have to find a winter activity and some motivation but it is HARD that’s for sure!!

    • natjtan March 8, 2015 at 5:51 pm

      Great tips for dealing with cold winter blues! Winters, where I am are cold, but nowhere near as cold as Canada! It’s sunny most days, but I find on grey, rainy days, I haven’t got as much get up and go get ’em.

      Have you looked into a light lamp that helps with S.A.D? I hear it can help.

      • Betty LIVIN March 9, 2015 at 8:26 am

        Hi Natjan- Where on the coast are you located? I lived in Seattle for 10 years and that was actually even harder on me than the bitter cold of Canada! I have heard of light lamps but never looked into them seriously. I’ve been lucky because this years winter has been really mild in my area.

        • natjtan March 10, 2015 at 7:12 am

          Hi Betty! I live in Barcelona, Spain, so winter’s are mild here compared to yours, but they can still be cold!

      • fromtrextotigress March 9, 2015 at 3:58 pm

        I have heard of the lamp, but never looked into it. I saw on the news this woman who said it really helped her with her winter blues. I should really consider it.

  • Bringing the Fun Back and Falling into a Pit of Rats | From Trex To Tigress March 6, 2015 at 6:59 pm

    […] on a completely different note, I was excited to be featured on Rachel’s blog beautiful blog   Click on the link to check out my tips for staying active in winter. If you love outdoor active […]


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: