The holiday season is supposed to be a time of joy and happiness. For many, it simply becomes a time of stress. Crazy mall parking lots, even crazier lineups inside the stores. Finding that perfect toy for your kid and fighting off other parents Black Friday-style for the last box of Shopkins. Getting home and cracking a bottle of wine and a box of gourmet holiday cookies to soothe your troubled mind (and bruises from winning that last box of Shopkins). While one option would be to stick with online shopping, I’ve got a better way to help deal with the stress of Christmas: working out.
Seriously, stay with me here.
Here’s 3 reasons why you should stick with your gym routine this winter:
- Reduce stress levels.
- Keep up your energy.
- Maintain your svelte figure.
Most people operate on a high level of stress during the holidays. There is seriously nothing more relieving than sweating it out on some cardio equipment or taking a yoga class. It really depends on your personality and you need to pick the class or activity that works for you. At GoodLife Fitness, my local gym, there’s a class called BodyFlow. It’s a combination of yoga, tai chi and pilates. The lights are dimmed, the music is soothing and there’s 8 minutes of meditation or relaxation time at the end. Doesn’t that sound blissful? I feel calm just thinking about it. Or perhaps your stress is causing you to feel a little full of rage. Maybe getting on that cross-trainer is more your style. Pop in your earphones, get some really upbeat or feisty music going and use that stress-rage to fuel you. I bet by the time 30 minutes are up, you are feeling so much better.
All that stress can drain you, both mentally and physically. The holiday season requires you to keep your wits about you and power through those shopping trips and marathon baking sessions. Get your blood pumping at the gym before you head out to the mall. What I love about my gym is that it’s located inside a mall which many GoodLife centres are. You can take two approaches:
- Hit up the gym before shopping. Take that BodyFlow class to put you into a zen state for dealing with the mayhem. You can also do some cardio to get your motivation up to power walk around that mall.
- Head to the gym after your shopping trip to de-stress. You can get out the shopping rage on the cardio equipment or in a class. Either that, or take that BodyFlow after to relax you after a particularly stressful shopping adventure.
It’s Christmas. And with that comes delicious treats. While you could eat everything in moderation, where’s the fun in that?? I’d rather spend a little more time in the gym than curb my desire for candy canes and gingerbread cookies and egg nog. I’m not going to sit on the couch and gorge on all of these goodies at once but I don’t want to feel guilty for eating a cookie every day for a month. So while you’re sweating it out on that treadmill, trying to reduce those stress levels, remember that you have also totally earned yourself a big glass of nog tomorrow with a gingerbread cookie (or three) dunked in the glass.
Andrea can always be found with a new craft in front of her, a form of technology on her right and a coffee on her left. This is how she survives suburbia with her two crazy toddlers in tow.