With holidays and the new year just around the corner, you may already be feeling overwhelmed with responsibilities that come with this wonderful season. Keeping a consistent fitness routine can be difficult, however, amid the chaos, Jillessa Anderson, an exercise physiologist at the Utah Valley Intermountain LiVe Well Center has some very doable tips/exercises for your hectic holiday schedule.
TIP ONE: Stay active while you travel
• Pack simple exercise equipment such as a jump rope or a resistance band to fit in a workout wherever
• Walk around the airport or walk stairs while waiting for your flight
• Work small muscle groups while traveling. Example: Core Press. This exercise can be done almost anywhere
- Start sitting upright in a chair with back straight
- Bring palms to the edge of knees, keeping arms straight
- Push palms down into the legs
- Hold for 3-10 seconds, release, and repeat
*This simple but effective exercise targets abdominal muscles and can help strengthen your core
TIP TWO: Take advantage of your shopping time
• Don’t wait for the envied front row parking at the stores, take a parking spot farther away to get in some extra walking
• Carry your items instead of putting them in a cart
• Do simple exercises, like standing calf raises, while waiting in line
- Start with feet shoulder width apart
- Raise your heels so you are in a tiptoe position
- Hold for a few seconds
- Control this motion as you slowly lower your heels back to the ground
• Online shoppers, you can try some sitting exercises, like chair squats and leg raises
TIP THREE: Try more vigorous workouts for shorter durations
• Increase the intensity of your workout. If you don’t have time to squeeze in a 30 minute routine. Cut your time in half and increase your intensity to yield some great results.
• For example, instead of doing traditional squats try a set of squat jumps.
- Start with your feet shoulder-width apart
- Squat down so your thighs are parallel to the floor, making sure your knees are behind your toes
- Jump high in the air
- Land softly on your feet
*This exercise develops explosiveness in the quads and glutes. It combines both cardio and lower body strength training.
Whatever your schedule this season, try these simple tips to stay fit during the holidays.