The holiday season is in full swing and with it comes extra activities that can fill up your calendar and interrupt your normal exercise routine. I’m someone that craves exercise daily because it helps me feel energized, creative, and positive. If I take too much time off from some form of physical activity then I start to feel kind of blah. Our bodies like to move!
Different seasons can require us to reprioritize how we are going to spend our precious time. I believe it’s important to be flexible and to allow yourself to skip a workout during the holiday season without feeling guilty about it. Creating beautiful memories that you can hold onto forever is just as important to your overall health and wellness as exercise. Time is something we can never get back.
If you find yourself short on time and needing to skip your normal exercise routine, here are a few clever ways you can get your body moving during the holiday season.
Seven Easy Ways to Exercise During the Holidays
1) Shopping. Walking while you shop is a great way to exercise during the holidays. To get the most out of a shopping trip, try taking breaks and bringing your packages back to the car in between stores. Shop your main streets while supporting the small businesses or take several trips walking around your local mall.
2) Baking. Standing burns more calories than sitting, so working in the kitchen counts. Turn on some fun music and get a little dancing in while you’re at it.
3) Deck the halls. Hauling boxes out of storage and putting up decorations indoors and outdoors is a great way to get festive while logging your exercise minutes for the day.
4) Cleaning. Cleaning house counts as lifestyle exercise. Turn on some of your favorite holiday music and keep a steady pace going to maximize your caloric burn. Just don’t forget to take water breaks.
5) Get some fresh air. Step outside and go for a walk. Even if it’s just a short one.
Invite family and friends to join you for outdoor activities. This will help you combine family and/or social time with exercise. Don’t be afraid to go solo if you don’t have any takers. Recreation alone can be used as relaxing time you spend on your own.
6) Take advantage of seasonal weather. Fun in the snow isn’t just for down hill skiers. Snow shoeing, cross country skiing, walking, sledding, ice skating, and hiking, are all examples of ways you can have fun in the snow while getting your exercise.
7) Your mother was right. Seriously, standing up straight burns more calories than slouching. For an extra workout try keeping your stomach muscles tight while standing. Take advantage of moments like waiting in line or standing at a cocktail party to work those stomach muscles.
This holiday season I recommend you take the pressure off of yourself to “do it all” and focus on having fun and staying healthy. Shoot for 20- 30 minutes of exercise per day total. Every minute and all types of exercise counts at the end of the week. Studies have actually shown that people that took 3 ten minute walks per day showed an improvement in blood pressure because they were moving more often throughout the day.
The more you move throughout the day, the more you benefit. Do your best to take advantage of every opportunity you get to move your body. Whether it’s part of a formal exercise routine, or something like shoveling snow in your front driveway.
Here’s to a happy and healthy holiday season!
Shared with love,