Your Holiday Fitness Program
The holiday season can be enough to derail even the most dedicated exerciser. Here are some tips to help you stay fit through New Year's.
5 Cold-Weather Workout Tips
If cold weather is derailing your fitness activities, personal trainer Kevin
Gianni, author of The Busy Person's Fitness Solution, offers these 5
winter weather workout tips:
Lace up your skates. During the winter it's often too
cold, too dark, or too slippery to walk or run outside. To get in a great
workout, try ice skating -- whether you go to a local pond for a pickup game of
hockey, or to the local ice rink (which also offers the advantage of no wind
Try thermal underwear. If you really need to be outside in
frigid weather, add a layer of thermal underwear, which will keep you both warm
and dry by wicking sweat away from your body, Gianni suggests.
Don't push it. On days when the air feels too cold to even
breathe in, heed your body's signals and stay indoors. Cold air can trigger
exercise-induced asthma (EIA). Symptoms include wheezing, chest tightness,
coughing, chest pain, and shortness of breath.
Try a new home routine. Bodyweight routines are exercises
that need no equipment and can be done in your own home. There are many types
of bodyweight routines, such as yoga, Pilates, and aerobics. Pop in a fitness
DVD or download a workout on your MP3 player to get you going.
Set up your own gym. Now's the time to think about getting
a treadmill, elliptical machine, or stationary bike. Having your own equipment
and knowing how to use it will keep you motivated and help you stay on
When all's said and done, says Tom Weede, a certified health and fitness
instructor and author of the forthcoming book, The Entrepreneur Diet,
it's important to be realistic.
"Give yourself a little slack during the holidays," he advises.
"After all, it's a time to have fun and be with family and friends, and if
you have a rigid attitude toward your diet and exercise, you may end up just
giving up because you've set the standard too high."
So allow yourself some "cheat" days, Weede suggests. "In
reality, what matters is the overall total calories you consume and the overall
total you expend through physical activity over the entire holiday period. One
or two splurges aren't going to derail your efforts," he says.
Remember, though, even if you find yourself simply too bogged down to
exercise at all during the holidays, that's no excuse to stay inactive once the
season is over, Ray says.
"If you do fall off the exercise wagon, there's no reason not to climb
back aboard once your post-holiday routine is established," Ray says.
"You'll find your stride again before you know it."