It’s a no-brainer that exercising is beneficial to health. Whether you do it to stay fit, extend your life span, keep your mind sharp or for any other reason, it’s important to keep at it. So why then, do so many people use the holidays as a reason to skive off?
In most cases, exercise takes a backseat during the holidays simply because people claim to be too busy. With all the shopping, cooking, cleaning and decorating going on, it’s easy to keep exercising off the list of priorities.
While it may be too much to ask to drop everything you’re doing and head to the gym, it’s not impossible to keep up with exercising during the holiday season. Instead of thinking that a workout has to be a separate addition to your already miles-long to-do list, try incorporating exercise into things you are already planning to do.
Park Farther Away
It’s been said before and it will surely be said again, but one of the easiest ways to add exercise to your day is by parking your vehicle farther away from the door. It’s a guarantee that you’ll visit the stores multiple times during the season, so just make it a habit to seek out a spot in the back of the lot instead of the front. If you’re in a hurry, power walk to the door to up your workout and stay on schedule.
Do Reps While you Wait
Baking is an essential part of the holidays; at least it is in my family. Waiting, unfortunately, is an essential part of baking. Once your cake, pie, cookies, brownie, etc. have been put in the oven, use the baking time to do some reps of simple exercises. If you have hand weights, do some bicep curls. Lacking equipment? Try some triceps dips using a table or chair as a balance. You can also work your legs with squats and calf raises. By the time your treats are done, you’ll have fit a small, but effective, workout into your day.
Don’t Just Sit
Whether it’s watching movies, the big game or a holiday special, a large chunk of time during the holidays is spent around the TV. Instead of just chilling on the couch, try sitting in some simple yoga poses. Seated-angle, sphinx and lotus are low-impact enough to be held for longer periods of time, and still give a great amount of stretch. If you’re feeling adventurous, try planking or some other more difficult pose during commercial breaks.
Go All Out for Decorating
Decorating is one of my favorite traditions. It’s like the icing on the cake for the holidays. Whether you decorate a lot or a little, you can use the time to get quite the workout. The lifting, stretching, squatting and placing can work up a sweat faster than you think. To spice up the yearly ritual, try listening to some of your favorite up-tempo holiday tunes and dance the holiday pounds away.