Fitness during the holiday season is a must. Not to burn off the holiday treats, but rather to keep me sane. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the holidays. But the anxiety with trying to keep all the lists in order to make sure the decorations are right, the house isn’t a mess, we have food and drinks for everyone coming over, we don’t overlap family obligations, the presents are bought for all the nieces and nephews/brothers and sisters/moms and dads/ dog and kid, and add in an elf here and there…it can be a lot.
To clear my head and make sure I take care of me as well as everything and everyone else, I make time for fitness following the vowels during the holiday season. When you think of fitness you may think of just going to a gym, a class, or going for a run. But if you follow these five vowels, you may come up with some new ways to find your mental and physical fitness to ease your mind over the next couple of months.
Make your own adventure. This may not be ideal when you have a million and one things on your to do list, but if you don’t take care of yourself you won’t really be able to fully enjoy the holiday season. An adventure could be anything you don’t normally do. Try taking an afternoon off (or more time if you can) and going somewhere you haven’t been or don’t get to go often, or doing something you haven’t done or rarely get to do because you are always too busy.
You probably think of exercising when you think of when you think of fitness during the holidays. Getting in a good sweat is always a way for me to clear my head to then focus my thoughts. And I am going to paraphrase Elle Woods here: exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don’t intentionally burn down the Christmas tree because they are over the holidays, they just don’t.
Getting your fitness in indoors at gyms and studios may or may not be your thing right now. But the great news is that many places are offering virtual classes that you can do anywhere and at anytime. And even better news is that many of them are offering free trials or livestreams. That way, you can try something new (another adventure) like a cardio dance class, a meditation, or a yoga class that may get you those extra endorphins to help get you through some long days and late nights. If you want to see some live classes from me you can follow along with me on instagram during the holiday season. Check out the Playmakers calendar for local running events.
I prefer to be outdoors to do most things like celebrate birthdays, watch sporting events, and even just read a good book. But those things may not be that ideal during the typical Michigan holiday season (last Christmas not included being in the 60s). But one thing I love to do all year outdoors is to move my body. Silver Bells, The Lansing Turkey Trot, and Holiday Classic 5k are events that I look forward to every holiday season with my family. I will miss them this year. Even without designated events, I love bundling up for a nice crisp run or a snowy walk through the trails. The fresh air leads to a fresh mindset.
(U)nique (and sometimes, (Y)ou)
Each person has unique preferences. Know that fitness is not one size fits all. Try new things and find what works for you. Use the vowels. Find your focus and clearly do you! Help yourself keep a healthy mind and body to be able to enjoy the holiday season with your loved ones to the fullest!