Have you heard it yet? It's playing all over the place now. I'm talking about Christmas music. "Jingle bells, jingle bells..." and various versions of it. I've been hearing it for a few weeks now. Like, before the Halloween stuff went on sale. Ready or not, the Holidays are here. And all that stress about Holiday weight gain and "falling off the wagon" and, well...you know. But there's still time for you to jump ahead of all that. You've got enough to think about at this time of year: Gifts, parties, meals and more. Think about your health right now, first and foremost.
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Sure, there might be more membership discounts in January, but do yourself a favor and jump start your fitness journey right now. Because when it comes to exercise, there's no better time than now to begin. And if you can get yourself into a comfortable routine before all the parties (and apps, drinks and desserts) come crashing down on you, you'll be one step ahead of the potential for weight gain.
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If you spend money on a workout program or new piece of exercise equipment, you'll use it. Who likes to waste money? "I do," said no one ever. I recommend PiYo from Beachbody (nope, not a coach). And remember, gyms get seriously packed after the Holidays which can make it difficult to attend group fitness classes. So claim yours now. Maybe a barre-style class if yours has one? If it doesn't, here's something you might try at home. I recently started teaching what we call a Barre Fit class, which combines elements of a traditional barre-style class with some basic non-barre strength moves:
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Note #2: Barre classes are meant to be done slowly with supreme emphasis on the expression (and perfection) of each movement. In other words, channel your inner ballerina and move through each exercise with precision. Really extend and flex throughout to gain the most from the workout. Any questions? Email me: tara (at) adailydoseoffit (dot) com
3) Sign up for a Winter fitness event with friends and/or family.
Turkey Trot? Frozen 5K? Season passes to the nearest ski hill or ice rink? Find something that gives you a reason to stay active this season. Let it and anyone else involved hold you accountable for participating because, well...if it's outside and you live somewhere lucky (unlucky?) enough to experience true Winter weather, then you'll need the motivation to get up and go. For example, I just ran the Hot Chocolate 15K in Chicago this past weekend and it was fa-reezing along the lake. Of course, I had my best running buds by my side so I ultimately survived to get another post-run coffee:
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4) Mentally accept that which is the Holiday season (and eat the damn cookie).
Physical and mental health go hand-in-hand, so it's equally important to address your mental health at this time of year. It's the "most wonderful time of the year," but it's also the most stressful because you just gotta get that shopping done, right? And who's coming over for Thanksgiving? Where is Christmas this year? How many of those cookies did you just eat? And now it's time for that second Christmas dinner? Explosion. You can't handle it all. But really, you can. You just have to accept that this time of year is crazy and go forth. Enjoy it because (whether or not you wish to admit it), you've been looking forward to it. And the cookies. Oh, the Christmas cookies.
5) Treat yourself to new fitness gear.
You're buying presents for everyone else, right? So why not treat yourself a bit early to some new fitness gear? It might be clothing, it might be that treadmill you've been saving up for. Splurge on yourself because you deserve it. You deserve the extra motivation, and you probably need it. Just like the workout program or new piece of exercise equipment, you wouldn't let a new pair of running shoes or a sleek new tank sit in a drawer, would you?
Note #3: When Kohl's reached out to me for help promoting good health over the Holidays, I jumped at the chance because Kohl's is one of my very favorite places to shop for activewear. Seriously, if you haven't discovered that which is the Kohl's activewear department, you really need to start the car up right now. They carry a TON of brands in-store and online, and their prices are totally affordable. You know Kohl's, everything is always on sale (or so it seems). Most of the clothing you see on me above is from Kohl's.
Question: How do you stay healthy over the holidays?