Mission Impossible: Holiday Fitness

Staying on track with your work out plan is hard enough when the weather is beautiful and time is on your side.  You know, in the middle of the year, when vacations come and go and you know you have half the year to accomplish any goals you may have set in January.  Make it cold outside, wet, dark and dreary, throw in a ton of family commitments, a few shots of stress, several social events you need to attend, deadlines to meet before the year is done, endless gifts you need to purchase, maybe catch a cold or flu for good measure, and you have a perfect recipe for fitness disaster.  Excuses come fast and furious this time of the year, as well as justification for slacking off.   Temptation of all sorts is rampant- holiday parties and endless goodies in the office.  Is it even possible to stick to your plan?  I say it is.  Not only is it possible, but you can even plan to lose some extra pounds and clean up your diet during the holiday season.  Here are some tricks to stay on track:


Be Flexible.  If you know you are going to have a tough time deciding between grabbing a drink with friends after work or hitting the gym, make a plan to wake up an hour earlier and get your sweat session going before work.  There is never just one way to reach your fitness goals.


Mix It Up.  Now is not the time to push through the same old routine.  Hire a Personal Trainer to show you something new, hook up with some gym friends to work out together, join in a new class.  Not only will mixing it up keep you interested, but because your muscles get used to the same repetitive motion, you will likely see some immediate results from changing it up.


Be Efficient.  Planning to see family or friends after hours and you know its going to cut into your gym time?  Suggest a hike or long walk, play a game of touch football or something else that is active and appropriate for the fitness level of the rest of the group.  That way, you are still moving around, and hopefully even breaking a sweat.  Combine the social initiative with the sweating initiative, and all of a sudden you have happy endorphins instead of a dreaded family commitment.


Create Substitutes.  No gym time?  No problem.  Have a plan for how you will get your work out in at home, in a hotel room or even at the office.  Get creative and don’t let your workout be dictated by where you are.  Seek the help of a Personal Trainer to establish a bodyweight routine you can do without any equipment.


Change Perspective.  Take working out off your “to do” list.  Put it on your “bonus” list.  Reward yourself with some time doing something good for yourself, something that makes you feel good, reduces your stress level.  You deserve it!  When you stop thinking about exercise as a burden and consider the endless benefits of living a healthier life, you will find the time to build it in to your schedule.