Keeping Active over Christmas
Christmas, like a holiday, can be seen as an excuse to temporarily abandon your exercise and dietary commitments. It’s almost instinctive to wrap up warm and stay in as the cool air settles. It’s also quite common – almost a ritual for some – to over-indulge on the festive food and drink. Before you know it, it’s January and you’ve lost all the progress you made in the months leading up to the festive period. You’ve put the weight back on; you’re getting breathless on the bike far too soon; you can’t lift as much.
Yet, even if the turkey-and-stuffing-binge is unavoidable, the winter is as good a time as any to keep active. Exercise may seem unappealing and daunting in the cold, dark December days – especially if you’re compelled to spend more time with the family – but it really isn’t that complicated. Following are five easy ways to keep active over the cold and busy Christmas period.
Probably the most daunting activity when it’s cold and grey, yet, as always, it lies just outside your front door. Perhaps jog around the block in the morning – feeling the crisp air is a refreshing start to the day – before returning home for a warm shower. Remember to dress for the cold; it’ll take longer to warm up. It’s also vital that you wear reflective clothing – you won’t be as visible to drivers in the dark.
Your local gym will still be open; except on the obvious days. Use the treadmill and bike if you find it too cold to run or cycle, and the rowing machine is an effective way to burn off those extra roasties. The weather won’t have any effect on this – so no excuses.
Also unaffected by the weather is the pool, which you may find quite warm for once. Swimming is a great exercise, and an all-over-body workout, so a few lengths of the pool might just make room for a few more pigs in blankets. Depending on swimming abilities, you could even take the family for a Boxing-Day-dip.
There’s nothing like healthy competition, and taking the kids for a game of badminton or squash might be a welcome break from all those Christmas board games. Constantly jumping for the shuttlecock isn’t bad exercise either.
If you really can’t find the time to go out, or if the cold outside is just too disheartening, there are plenty of exercises you can do in the comfort of your room. You don’t need much space for press-ups, squats, sit-ups, star-jumps, lunges, planks, and all the rest. It’ll only take ten minutes out of your morning. It is also worth checking out Instructor Live – an online video streaming service with over a thousand workouts to choose from.
You’ll always be able to find something active to do, and you’re bound to feel better for it – remember it isn’t compulsory to let it go over Christmas.
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