by Lauren Mansur
Your waistband may disagree with calling the season of feasting “the most wonderful time of the year.” However, it’s possible to both enjoy the holidays and maintain a healthy lifestyle. We’ve got you covered with these eight tips to stay fit and emerge on the other side of the season looking and feeling great!
- Get a temporary gym membership.
Ask your family and friends in the area you travel if you can get a free pass at their home gym so you can keep up your exercise regime when in another location.
- Find fitness-focused holiday discounts.
Many gyms offer significant deals or discounts over the holidays. It could be a new membership discount or a deal on certain classes. Take advantage of this time of year when everyone—including businesses—are in a giving mood.
- Set a pre-New Year’s workout goal.
Eight weeks is the perfect amount of time to set specific, realistic expectations to gradually and healthily lose weight. Get a jump-start on New Year’s Resolutions by setting your goals early during the holiday season so you’ll already be half-way there by the time January 1st rolls around. Be sure to make your goals measurable and manageable. If you’re new to exercising, going to the gym every day might not lead you to lose 10 pounds in two weeks. Instead, focus your goal around something like “I will lose 3 pounds in 2 weeks by working out for 5 days a week for 60 minutes.”
- Turn the mall into your personal gym!
Shopping for gifts or other holiday goods? Many shopping malls have miles of walkways and multiple floors. Walking from end to end and moving between floors is a simple–and effective–way of squeezing in your daily 45-60 minutes of movement.
- Indulge…just a little.
If your funds allow it, treat yourself to some new workout clothes. Old Navy and J.C. Penney offer affordable workout clothes in all sizes.
- Go sightseeing!
If you’re traveling for the holidays, get outside and explore by foot! You may need to plan ahead to incorporate a more active style of sight-seeing, but walking even 45 minutes every day of your vacation will help keep off pesky pounds.
- Make healthy, homemade holiday meals with a twist.
Cooking for a crowd or large holiday dinner? Be the best – and healthiest – cook at the table by whipping up different spins on your family’s favorite holiday foods!
- Sign up for a festive 5k.
Towns and counties often hold annual holiday runs. Look into these in your area and start training now for them!
Lauren Mansur is a freelance writer living in South Seattle with a background in communications. She is passionate about public health and community involvement and volunteers with Rainier Health & Fitness in her spare time.
Featured image is a cc licensed image attributed to Mgstanton/ Flickr