Obviously this tip holds true year-round (like most of the others, as well), but it is especially easy to fall off the workout routine during the holidays. I’ve heard and used all the excuses myself–I don’t have time, I’m too tired, other things are more important, and the very self-defeating thought that it doesn’t matter because you’re going to gain weight anyway.
Ultimately we will make time for what we find important. If you have it in your mind that exercising is a valuable use of your time, then you will be more likely to make it happen. You may not get as many workouts in a week as usual or you may have to change your days or times to fit it in around other commitments, but there is no excuse for completely cutting it out. That is my most basic form of this tip–just go do something.
I am lucky enough to work in a gym, but you can workout anywhere. If you truly have a hard time getting out of the house or just don’t want to add one more stop on your commute, get in a 20-30 minute body-weight workout at home. Things like squats, lunges, planks, pushups and jumping jacks are all great exercises to put together for a no-equipment workout. If you are traveling, just pack some sneakers and a few exercise bands and you can do a similar easy workout in a hotel room.
If time is your limitation, you can absolutely get a killer workout in a short period of time. Just keep your rest periods short to keep yourself moving to get the biggest impact in that small time period. My colleagues and I all throw in a tabata workout with our classes and clients on occasion. Set your timer for 20 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest for 8 intervals. You can do the same thing for all 8 intervals (say squats) or you can alternate between exercises. If you do three or four sets of tabatas you’ll be done in no time! We will also just sometimes set a timer for 30 minutes, pick about 6-8 exercises and see how many times you can get through your circuit before time is up.
If you have guests, see if they want to join in with you. We love when clients bring in friends and family to their sessions! It’s a great way to get everyone active and most of the time they really enjoy coming. If your guests are furry, get them in on the action, too. 😉
A last tip is try to make it fun and do something you enjoy. You will be more likely to stick with that way. Of course I always encourage people to get a mix of strength, endurance, and mobility, but this time of year I’d rather you keep doing something than stop because you won’t make time for something you hate. Try to think about it as a way to relieve stress. We all of plenty of that, so getting in a fast bit of fitness can help alleviate some of it–even if it is temporary!
What are your favorite ways to get in a quick workout this time of year?