This time of year isn’t nicknamed the Silly Season for no reason. December can certainly be a hectic time between finishing up tasks at work, running around buying gifts for loved ones, planning or embarking on a holiday vacation, jumping from holiday party to holiday party. It can be easy to forget to take a moment for ourselves to focus on our health and fitness. That’s why we’re laying out six easy exercises and workouts you can do this holiday season without having to trek to the gym!
1). Roll out that mat and do some Yoga!
Whether you’re a yogi or not, the holidays are the perfect time to cultivate a yoga practice. We love yoga because you can fit in a quick 15 minute practice any time of day and not only can yoga be physically demanding, but it also helps relieve stress and gives your mind a little holiday of its own. And you don’t have to pay the big bucks to take a yoga class. Simply look up yoga practices on Youtube or find a free app to download on your smart phone. The biggest thing to remember when it comes to yoga is that it’s all about the breath.
2). Step outside and go for a walk.
This is probably the easiest form of exercise you could embark on this holiday season. And while it may not seem high intensity and you won’t see massive gains by taking a walk around the block, making sure you get some movement in is important. Take a 20 minute walk every morning or opt to walk around during your break at work. You’ll find that moving around is better than sitting around all day, and it’s another way to clear your mind during this crazy holiday season. And if you’re feeling ambitious, you can always turn that walk into a run!
3). Jumping jacks, jumping rope, dancing around.
If you really want to get your heart rate up but aren’t too keen on a formal workout and definitely don’t want to make the trek to the gym, simply move your body as much as possible. Do sets of jumping jacks until you work up a sweat or feel out of breath, jump rope for 30 seconds as hard as you can, rest for 30 seconds and repeat until you’ve had enough. Or, probably out favorite option, put on your favorite dance tunes and have a dance party with yourself. Move your body like no one is watching until you feel your heart rate rise. You’ll find that moving in these ways can help release tension and even increase your energy.
4). Find some stairs.
This is an easy one for anyone living in a two story home. We all know that climbing up and down stairs is an excellent workout (and excellent for the booty). Take some time out of your day to find a set of stairs, whether that be at home, at work or in a park, and go up and down them for a solid 20 minutes. Better yet, sprint up to the top of the stairs, rest, and repeat for 10 minutes.
5). Wall sits and squats.
These two combined can be brutal, but they’re also a great way to get the blood pumping and don’t take long at all! We recommend setting a “squats alarm” on your phone that goes off at the same time twice a day. Every time you hear the alarm, do 200 squats. Anytime you sit down in front of the tv to indulge in some holiday themed content, do a wall sit during commercial breaks for as long as you can. Squeezing in these smalls workouts through out the day will encourage a healthier balance this time of year.
6). Plank before bed.
Everyone’s favorite exercise, the plank. What most of us fear most this time of year is squeezing into a stylish jeans after all of the treats we indulge in. Doing even 15 reps of 30 second planks with a rest in between every night before bed can help you tighten up that waist and keep the belly away. Plus, we always sleep better when we’ve squeezed some exercise in that day, so prepared for a deep sleep.
As we spend more time with family and find ourselves scrambling to great the perfect holiday season, we forget to set aside time for ourselves. The fact is, taking just a few minutes a day to move your body and stay active can massively improve your mood, help you deal with that frustrating family member, boost your energy for cooking and present wrapping, and lead you into a healthier and more balanced new year.