Holiday season is underway – the time of the year when it’s the easiest to make excuses that lead you to not exercising – you don’t have time, you’re busy with the kids in school, mid-terms are approaching, you’re prepping for the holidays, family is visiting, end-of-year (business and personal) is consuming… Until finally you tell yourself: “I’ll just wait for the new year”.
Forget About Your Excuses, Not About Fitness!
Why wait? There is no better time than now! Here are a few tips to help cut the excuses this busy season.
Schedule your workouts
Just like you make a doctor’s appointment, put your workout time on your agenda as if it is an appointment that you cannot cancel. It can be just as important as the doctor – it’s your health – and can help prevent having to schedule unnecessary appointments and trips to the actual doctor in the future.
A little bit of something is better than nothing
Exercising doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend an hour in the gym every day of the week. If you can only book 20-30 minutes into your schedule, no problem, do what you can. You will feel better than if you did nothing!
Make the best out of the time you have
If you have a shortened workout time, make the best out of the time that you have available. On shorter days, try a 20 minute full body HIIT workout, or an interval routine with your cardio. On days you have more time, work on the areas you seem to neglect throughout the week. Take that extra time to focus on specific goals you may have.
Set a realistic weekly time goal for exercise
Challenge yourself! Each time you do an activity add it up until you reach your goal. For example, your goal can be 4 hours or 240 minutes total of exercise for the week. Monday you complete a 20 minute HIIT workout in the morning and 20 minutes of brisk walking in the evening so you have totaled 40 minutes of activity for Monday, leaving you with 200 minutes to tackle the rest of the week.
Get Everyone Involved (Even Santa)!
By staying proactive and planning your workout time into your schedule you can help to avoid the struggle of staying in shape during the holiday season, when our schedule seems too busy to handle. In addition, plan activities that can be done with those you enjoy being around during the holidays.
One of the greatest parts of the holiday season is being around family and friends. As you plan your holiday activities try to include some of these fun fitness ideas to help keep everyone on track throughout the season.
Start a family and friends fitness challenge
Try tracking steps, distance biking, or total accumulated minutes of exercise. You can choose to do a month long challenge or split it into different weekly or even daily challenges. Set goals and pick a reward that is a positive motivator for those involved to complete the challenge.
Participate in fun fitness activities together
Take a fitness class. Sign up for a local running/walking event – play a small teams sport such as tag football, basketball, kickball, or volley ball – fly kites or play frisbee – take an evening walk in the neighborhood to look at lights and decorations.
Plan home cooked meals
Instead of going out or getting take out, plan meals at home where family and friends can be included with cooking the meal. Get everyone involved in planning a healthy and enjoyable menu as well. Not only are you in control of what goes into your food, you are also able to spend close quality time together.
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About the Author
Growing up with an abundance of energy, McKenzie Stern could usually be found practicing an active lifestyle, participating in multiple sports including gymnastics, competitive cheerleading, soccer, flag football and swimming. After high school she attended Florida State College at Jacksonville and graduated from the Physical Therapist Assistant program specializing in rehab. While completing her internship for the program graduation McKenzie started working at a fitness facility as a personal trainer and fell in love.
With her rehab background she has been able to help multiple people improve their functional abilities, as well as challenge them to try things they never deemed possible – striving to take people’s weakness and transform it into their most prized strength. With a mindful approach, McKenzie’s passion is to help people become healthier and more functionally active as a lifestyle adaptation. Going on her 10th year in the fitness, health and wellness industry, she loves to work with all types of goals, including general weight loss/management, increasing functional abilities, core, balance, stability and building lean muscle.
McKenzie has been a resident of the Fort Lauderdale area for 4 years and is head fitness instructor at the Lauderdale Yacht Club. She also helps private clients throughout Eastern Fort Lauderdale. To inquire about personal training or wellness you can email McKenzie at firstname.lastname@example.org.