The holidays are a special time. Presents are received and exchanged, loved ones spend time together, Uncle Ed dresses up as Santa Claus and scares the young children, and we are exposed to an absurd amount of glistening hams, extra large Christmas cookies, creamy eggnog, and other belt-busting treats, just a name a few. ‘Tis the season to be jolly, but sometimes all the jolliness can really mess with our diets. Given that the holidays are a time to relax and kick back, not everyone wants to be working out in the gym everyday to burn those inevitable Christmas Calories. Here are some fun ways to get in some exercise without missing out on the holiday fun!
1. Take a walk around the neighborhood to check out the Christmas lights
There’s nothing more festive than walking around a pretty neighborhood to check out the lights adorning the houses, bushes, and trees and the luminaries that glow along the sidewalk. Grab some friends and power walk it! The cold air will keep you moving. Side note- be sure not to criticize the jumbo-sized, inflatable Santas. They have feelings too!
2. Venture into the attic and down to the basement for the Christmas decorations
You know they’re in those creepy, dark spaces but you’re too scared (or lazy?) to grab them. Walking up and down the stairs is a perfect way to work those buns and thighs. Plus all those ornaments, Christmas crafts, and wooden sleighs will make for some serious heavy lifting.
3. Go snowboarding or skiing
Not only are they fun and adventurous winter activities, but both snowboarding and skiing are great cardio workouts. Race your friends down the slopes or try going off one of the ramps. You know there’s a secret adrenaline junkie inside you just waiting to get out!
4. Have A Christmas Dance Party
Make a CD of your favorite upbeat Christmas songs, get some friends, and start rockin’ around the Christmas tree. Don’t hold back. Wave your scarf around, do the worm, show off your best moves. Some song suggestions: “All I Want For Christmas Is You” by Mariah Carey, “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays” by N’SYNC, and “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town” by Bruce Springsteen. You’ll be huffing and puffing before you know it! Be warned that if you break these moves out at a party, a sneaky relative may in fact film you and use the video for blackmail in the future. You may want to start practicing now.
5. Run a Christmas 5K
Okay, so technically this is considered “working out.” However, it’s not too far of a run (only a little over 3 miles…you can do it, you had 5 helpings of candied yams last night! That takes serious skill.) plus many of them have fun themes that make it more of a party atmosphere than exercise. Check out your local community races and it’s guaranteed that there will be some kind of race where everyone dresses up like Santa and races to the finish line (which is, more often than not, a bar).