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Fitness over the Festive Season

The festive season can be such a busy time with work deadlines, parties, shopping, travel and kids being off school, and that can make it challenging to fit your fitness routine into your schedule. From now until the New Year your schedule will more than likely be filled with family obligations, travel, outings and tempting treats. Remember that health and fitness is part of your everyday life. It’s not something that can or should be turned on and off. Do everything in moderation.

Imagine the scenario…. You are visiting the family for a long holiday weekend. Its cold outside and you can’t get to the gym, or there is no gym or gym equipment in miles. It can be very tempting to pull on the oversized comfy jumper and sit on the sofa to watch a repeat of Santa Claus the movie with everyone else, eating bowls of crisps, nuts and boxes of chocolates. Does this sound familiar? What would you do?

You don’t need to let the holiday period get in the way of your fitness, as this can make it hard for you in January to get back on track. I have been talking to a lot of my clients over the past few weeks, and rather than them putting pressure on themselves with a rigid fitness routine and trying to lose weight over the festive period, I try to coach a more relaxed approach. At this time of year, it is more about maintaining the awesome results they have achieved over the past year, whilst thinking about their goals for the year ahead. Exercise is also a great way to minimise stress and depression that are common during the holidays.

During the festive period, there are a few strategies that you can use to keep your fitness routine intact and we would like to share them with you.

  1. Do smaller more intense short bursts of exercise. Studies have shown that your current fitness level can be maintained with as little as 10 minutes of high intensity interval training. Use techniques like HIIT, supersets or mini circuits. If you can get to the gym but have limited time them try pairing body parts up like chest and back, that way you will get through a lot me in a smaller space of time.

  2. Be more active in your daily life. Park the car further away from the shops whilst out and about. Or walk places rather than take the elevator or walk to talk to a co-worker rather than emailing them.

  3. Do your workout at home. You can still exercise with little to no gym equipment and 3 x 10 minute workouts a week is better than nothing.

  4. Do more housework. Cleaning, scrubbing mopping and vacuuming are all great opportunity’s to get in some daily exercise, and you can always throw in a few lunges and squats whilst you are doing it.

  5. Be an early bird. Wake up 30 minutes before everyone else to get a workout in. This will ensure your exercise is done before other commitments or crises kick in.

  6. Take the kids out around the park. Walking there will not only give you something to entertain the kids, you will get some exercise in and a bit of fresh air can brighten up your mood.

  7. Aim for 10,000 steps per day. This is by no means a magic number but aiming for 10,000 steps will give you a good amount of cardio that is manageable and you will be burning calories.

  8. Act like a kid!...Go ice skating, sledding or if we get some snow have a snow ball fight. This will get your heart pumping and you will have great fun with the family too.

  9. Stay committed by exercising with a friend. This will not only get you to the gym and keep you accountable, but its great bonding time.

  10. Enter a sporting event. Either before Christmas such as one of the 5/10km Santa dashes or something earlier into next year like January or February. This will keep you active during the Christmas period and give you a focus for the new year. Nothing to extreme, but something that will give you a focus and will make you get out there and exercise.

  11. Watch your alcohol measures and intake, and watch your portion control. You can still have alittle of everything you like and enjoy, however, you don’t need to over indulge.

  12. If you can’t get active outside for one reason or another, look for alternatives. The Wii Fit is a great way to get the whole family involved in some form of movement based activity and you will have a laugh whilst doing it.

So, as you can see there are many ways you can incorporate activity’s and fitness into your Christmas schedule. Yes, it will take some planning, and it might not be the strict regimented program you usually follow, but it keeps you ticking over until normality kicks back in. Be aware of perfection, It is easy to miss a workout and get discouraged and judge yourself, but don’t get disheartened, just pick it up again the next day, no worries. Enjoy the Christmas period, and the reality is you will not break your health plans but eating too much on one day, however treating yourself every single day from the middle of December until the New Year, whilst skipping exercise will inevitability make you put on weight.

For more help with a fitness program over the Christmas period why not give us a call and book in for a FREE lifestyle consultation and taster session and let us help keep your fitness goals on track this festive season. We offer a variety of different packages to cater for everyone. Contact us today for more information

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