The Christmas holiday season is upon us! There is so much going on at this time of year, and for many, extra commitments are added into our daily routines. Between social events, family gatherings and extra errands to run, it can all add up!
Time is often cited as a top reason people do not exercise (Rebar, et.al, 2017), even without the added time crunch the holiday season can present. This is often a time of year where people push aside their fitness programs and goals, with the intention of picking them up again come January. In taking this approach, we are only making it harder for ourselves in the long run! It will not only be more difficult to build the habit of exercise into our routine again, but it will also cause regression of current fitness levels and goals.
If you find yourself really feeling that time crunch this holiday season, but still want to maintain your fitness and exercise routine, I have included some tips on how to do so. From structured gym workouts to fun activities with the family, any form of physical activity that gets your heart rate up counts. Make some time for exercise a few times per week over the holidays and your body will thank you come the new year!
Here are my top 5 tips for staying fit over the holidays:
Incorporate HIIT into your exercise routine.
Including HIIT (high intensity interval training) is a good way to make workouts quick and efficient.
Pair up your exercises.
Consider super-setting exercises within your workouts. Pairing up exercises and performing them back-to-back with no rest in between can help to speed up a gym session.
Try quick workout options.
Look for time-condensed workout programs. These can include gym-based workouts or at-home workout options, such as DVDs or YouTube videos. Many exercise DVDs have workouts that offer options based on length of the workout: choose one with a length of time that best suits your busy schedule.
Take a hike.
Go for walks with family and friends. Instead of sitting down to catch up, bundle up and take a walk together in the fresh air. Not all exercise has to take place indoors or in a gym—we are Canadian, after all!
Have fun outdoors!
Try an outdoor activity together with family and/or friends, like skating or tobogganing. (You will certainly get a workout in climbing back up the hill!)
By Caitlyn Jones – BPE, CSEP-CPT