Staying Fit From Christmas to New Years
“No thanks, I’ll wait until mid-January to change.” Nope. Not this time.
Top off that blonde roast twice, maybe three times, throw your galoshes on and keep moving forward. People still wear galoshes, right?
You’re not destined to be a couch potato. Just yell “It’s a trap!” when you start to feel the cushions lure you in. We’re conditioned to think a certain way; “If I’m not at the gym, it doesn’t count!” Untrue. As long as you’re moving and expressing some type of strength, you’re doing good.
So what can you do to keep from looking like Santa this year?
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Don’t be a Scrooge!
1) Be Childish
Act like a kid again! When you “adult,” you don’t let loose, you think of all the reasons why you “shouldn’t” or “can’t”. Well here’s your permission. Throw a snowball at your neighbor (is that considered assault?), go ice skating, watch your dog go crazy in the snow, build a fort outside for your children. PLAY! Playing, laughing and smiling are all part of learning and experiencing movement. If you can have a good time and burn calories, why wouldn’t you?
2) Winter Sports
Ever talk to someone who skis or snowboards? Those nerds enjoy winter. How odd! But you can be a nerd too! Try skiing, snowboarding or even snowshoeing. These sports can get pricey if you buy equipment and want season passes, so go for resorts that offer daily rentals and deals on lift tickets.
3) Challenge Yourself
The holiday season seems like a poor time to invest in yourself because of all types of restrictions, but it’s actually the best time. If you can get through the end of the year without gaining any weight while improving your movement and performance, the likelihood of you carrying that momentum for the rest of the year can increase tenfold.
You can start by challenging yourself to workout ‘X’ amount of days per week or tracking your effort using a heart rate monitor. For you more advanced movers, do a time-bound challenge like one hundred kettlebell swings in five minutes. Try to beat your best time!
4) Fitness Snacks
Moving whenever you can is just a good idea. Little bite sized pieces of exercise are not only adorable but doable!
Here’s how: Park further away, take the stairs whenever possible, shovel your driveway (yuck), get up from your desk every hour or do some bodyweight squats while eating cupcakes and Christmas cookies.
5) Stay Accountable
Ever say to yourself “Mmm, I don’t think I’ll workout today. I have to do X, Y and Z…”? Don’t lie, we’ve all been there before!
A good thing about having family and friends that are active and enjoy any kind of movement is that you have people to encourage you when you don’t feel like exercising. Start a fitness tradition with loved ones. Similar to point three, challenge them to some sort of physical competition. Just don’t be mad when Uncle Henry can squat fifty pounds more than you.
6) Goal Setting
What kind of ‘end of the year’ list would that be if we didn’t mention goals? At this point it may seem like setting goals is futile. Well, only if you allow that to happen.
Creating specific, measurable and attainable goals for yourself will help enhance your movement practice and even boost productivity outside of that realm. If you have somewhere to go, there’s less of a chance you’ll f*** around and waste time.
Begin by choosing a small goal that you can practice everyday until that’s habitual, then add more things to check off until you’re knee deep in success.
7) Gym Deals
Join a gym. Our gym. Take advantage of the time of year. Many gyms have specials and promotions at the end of the year. Why wait for the new year? Why not start now? Find a gym that caters to your needs, keeps your goals in mind and has a good community. Either that or create your own sketchy garage gym with chainsaws and PVC pipes.
Working out doesn’t have to fit into a neat little box. It can be messy and fun. Finding ways to stay active during the colder months can be as simple as getting outside or playing with your kids. The bottom line: Just move!