The last 2 weeks of December are a busy time for everybody. But that’s no excuse to sit around! Here are 6 ways to stay active this time of year.
1. Split It Up
As your schedule fills with holiday activities, you might not always have enough time for a full workout, so don’t be afraid to split your workouts up into smaller chunks. Go for a 10-20 minute walk or run before work, then stop by the gym for 20 minutes of weights on the way home. Some physical activity is better than no activity — even just one mini workout is better than sitting all day. Prioritize consistency over perfection. It’s ok to do a short workout in place of your usual routine, just don’t skip it all together.
2. Schedule It
We get it…your calendar is full and getting in more than a few workouts this week isn’t going to happen. That just means the workouts you are able to squeeze in are that much more important. Put them on your schedule and stick to them. Prep for them like it’s an important meeting (i.e., eat a healthy snack beforehand, get enough rest the night before and be on time). Setting yourself up for success with an exercise plan and getting in a few sweat seshes per week is SO much better than zero. Squeezing in a quick 15 minute workout here and there is much better than skipping an entire day.
3. Motivate Yourself
In addition to busy holiday schedules, winter brings fewer hours of daylight and colder temps, dropping your motivation even more. Find something that will get you out of bed for an early morning workout or willing to brave the cold for a run or a trip to the gym. Treat yourself to new winter exercise clothing to inspire more outdoor activities. Make sure you stick to the workouts you planned by placing $1.00 – $5.00 in a jar for each one you complete, then spend the money on something fun after the holiday season.
4. Keep Tracking
Track your nutrition and activity throughout the holidays to stay accountable to healthy goals. Remind yourself of the benefits of food logging to ensure you keep accurate records — even if you slip up on your diet from time to time. It’s easy to fall into the “just one more” trap with cookies and other sweets, but knowing you’ll have to include each of those cookies in your food log might help you resist the temptation.
5. Partner Up
Even if it’s just for the holiday season, having a workout partner can help you stay motivated and accountable. You’re more likely to get to the gym if you have someone there waiting to workout with you. To step it up, make a bet: if one person skips a workout, they owe the other person $2.00 or they have to wear a Santa hat during the next workout. A little fun can boost everyone’s motivation.
6. Take the Long Way
Make elevators and escalators off-limits for the rest of December. If you’re at the mall and want to add to the challenge, stop at a store on the lower level of the mall, then make your next store on the top level, then switch again. You’ll get in a solid stair workout by the time you’re done picking out gifts. You can also take a few extra laps around the mall to get in more activity.
Not only will you feel better after working and eating healthy, but you’ll also feel better when the holidays are over as a whole. We all know the post-holiday feeling when we haven’t exercised or moved much in a while and overindulged over the last sixish weeks. Sticking to your workout plan and being mindful of what you’re eating will help avoid the post-holiday gloom.