5 Simple Holiday Fitness Tips to Keep You on Track

If “the most wonderful time of the year” has you stressing about all those missed workouts and extra helpings of casseroles, you’re not alone. Travel plans, holiday parties, and festive treats can mess with your workout plan, and before you know it, you’ll feel like you’re back at square one.

If this sounds familiar, we’ve got you covered. Here are some simple tips to help you keep track of your fit goals this Christmastime.

1. Say “yes” to less

Woman checking mail kitchen  Holiday Fitness

If you’re already stressed thinking about what you need to do this holiday season, embrace a “less is more” mantra. Instead of saying yes to every Secret Santa, pot luck dinner, and holiday cheer you’re invited to, pick and choose the events you enjoy the most.

“It will be less stressful overall,” says Stephanie Monsour, personal trainer and owner of Step It Up With Chicago. It will also free up your calendar a bit, so you actually have time for holiday fitness.

2. Scale up your workouts

Avoid an all-or-nothing approach to vacation fitness. If you don’t have time for your usual workout routine during the busy holiday season, cut yourself some slack and schedule short, low-intensity workouts.

“Low-intensity workouts mean you’ll be less afraid to actually start them, and shorter workouts mean you’ll be able to more easily schedule them into your calendar,” says Mansour.

3. Put fitness on the calendar

Workout Plan Notebook |  Holiday Fitness

It’s easy to overcommit on the holidays — and when you feel like you don’t have time to spare, your fitness goals can end up on the back burner.

Leave some wiggle room in your schedule to make it easier to find time for fitness. “Don’t schedule things back-to-back,” says Mansoor. Instead of going straight from work to a holiday party, for example, schedule a short break in between — then use that time to do a 10-minute workout or a few quick core exercises.

Better yet, block out time for workouts before You start filling your calendar with holiday obligations — and write down what you’ll exercise so you don’t get stuck in decision mode.

4. Focus on adding healthy foods

We know Christmas cookies and holiday cocktails aren’t usually the healthiest options. But telling yourself “no” over and over again can be quite exhausting – and deflating.

Instead of operating in deprivation mode, focus to add Healthy meals that will fuel your holiday fitness goals — like extra veggies at brunch or some protein with your grandma’s pasta dinner. “By what focus are you to be able to Yes, you will be in the mindset of doing healthy things for yourself,” says Mansoor. “Add stuff and feel good about what you’re doing for your body.”

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5. Make self-care a priority

Woman Sound Meditating Lotus Pose Cross Legs Indian Style Living Room Wine Earbud Headphones |  Holiday Fitness

Not feeling up to a workout? Instead of veggie on the couch, choose a self-care activity: do a relaxing yoga session, meditate, or go for a walk.

What to do if you get off track

If you feel like you’ve fallen off the fitness wagon, re-enter your routine with a single healthy choice. “Just because you make 10 unhealthy choices doesn’t mean the whole day is shot,” says Mansour. “Think of every day, hour, and choice as your own, and set it apart from others.”

So even if you skip your morning workout to meet friends for brunch — and then go a little overboard with mimosas and puff pastries — you can still save the day by streaming the afternoon workout. Every healthy choice adds up!

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